How to help in the wake of Hurricanes Irma, Maria, and Harvey

By: Rosie McDowell

September 29, 2017

Compiled September 28, 2017

In these days following multiple natural disasters, Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, offered the following statement calling for solidarity and prayer.

"Just as we begin to assess the material and emotional damage of hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the devastation of yet another storm, Hurricane Maria, has struck the U.S. Virgin Islands and Dominica, and has battered Puerto Rico with catastrophic effects unprecedented in the island's modern history. I exhort the faithful to solidarity in this time of great need for our brothers and sisters in harm's way—many of whom have been hit repeatedly by the successive hurricanes."

"Casting aside any temptation to despair, and full of hope in the loving Providence of God, we pray that our Father may receive unto his loving presence those who have lost their lives, may he comfort the grieving, and may he fortify the courage and resilience of those whose lives have been uprooted by these disasters. May he extend the might of his right hand and bid the sea be 'quiet' and 'still' (Mark 4:39)."

In dynamic emergency situations often the best way to offer assistance is by making financial donations to organizations with skilled teams in the location. 

The University of Notre Dame is not formally endorsing any of these organizations listed. You are free to donate to any charity you choose. This listing is a partial listing of the many organizations accepting contributions to relief and assistance with regards to Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.

Catholic Charities USA is the official domestic relief agency of the U.S. Catholic Church. Catholic Charities supports disaster response and recovery efforts including direct assistance, home repair, home rebuilding, health care services and other programs. Catholic Charities uses case management that enables long-term disaster recovery.

The American Red Cross relief effort stretches across multiple states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. In Florida, Red Cross workers are providing food, shelter, relief supplies, health services and emotional support in the hardest hit areas. Getting relief materials to the islands is difficult, but the Red Cross is working with federal, corporate and community partners to get supplies to the region by both sea and air.

Americares, has emergency teams in locations affected by hurricane Maria and Harvey they work with local authorities to stock emergency shelters with medical equipment and supplies.

Save the Children is currently on the ground in Puerto Rico responding to the needs of children. Save the Children works closely with other nonprofit and federal agencies, and local partners to assess the specific needs of children and families amid reports of massive damage.

The Salvation Army has a long-term presence on both Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, which meant it was able to respond quickly once the hurricanes had passed, meeting essential needs and offering support. With a permanent footprint in the affected communities, The Salvation Army's Disaster Services will continue to provide assistance throughout the urgent response and into the future, as the battered territories rebuild.

World Vision is responding by equipping local partners in Puerto Rico to distribute emergency supplies and is responding to the needs in the Dominican Republic where thousands of people have been displaced from their homes due to flooding from Maria.