Seven billion people currently populate Earth, the planet that we walk on each and every day. Out of those seven billion, over 320 million populate the United States of America.
That is millions of humans, in our home country, holding the power to help or hurt our environment right in the palms of their hands every single day. Holding the power to either encourage or attempt to prevent natural disasters.
On August 25, 2017, thousands of people in Texas had to pay the price of those who harm our environment by experiencing Hurricane Harvey, one of the most major hurricanes to hit the United States in over a decade.
Billions of dollars of property was damaged. Hundreds of thousands of people were left without electricity. Dozens were killed.
While climate change is not entirely to blame for the devastation, direct correlations of rising sea surface temperatures show that it may have caused Harvey to form and intensify.
That is rising sea surface temperatures, right in our home country, as an extended result of poor decisions made by millions of humans in today’s society.
However, there are also humans out there that want to help. People with caring hearts, that want to spread awareness. Billions with the power to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey, right in the palms of their hands.
This started with the Cabrini University community. Days after the tragedy occurred, President Donald Taylor took the time to reach out to the student body, faculty and staff.
“The catastrophic loss of life, forced homelessness and property damage caused by Hurricane Harvey is staggering,” he said. “We have students and alumni who live in the Houston region. We need to continue praying for all those affected by this storm.”
In addition to his kind words, he informed the community of how they can help.
Virtually, students can give back through Red Cross on “redcross.org/donate/hurricane-harvey,” or through the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston by visiting “catholiccharities.org.”
Students can also visit “impact.cabrini.edu” to give directly to the Cabrini Hurricane Harvey Relief Effort. By making an impact, one’s donation will go to Mother Cabrini High School’s Drive to Texas, Cabrini’s Center on Childhood Trauma and Domestic Violence Education and fund the Wolfington Center’s 2018 rebuilding trip.
The Wolfington Center will take students and others to travel to the affected area to help in the long-term rebuild in 2018. They have also placed jars around campus for donations, in which every dollar, quarter and penny will go to Catholic Charities of Galveston-Houston.
Outside of Cabrini’s community, the Providence Animal Shelter, located in Media, Pennsylvania, realized that people were not the only one’s in need of help. The shelter sent a crew of four courageous people down to Texas to rescue struggling animals. On Saturday, September 2, they returned with 25 cats and 12 dogs.
“Our hearts are so full from the support we’ve received,” the shelter shared on their Facebook page. “This includes our lifesaving volunteers, who, without hesitation, met us at 3:0 a.m. to welcome these new family members.”
The rescued animals include a young, terrier puppy, an eight month old Chihuahua and a pitbull-terrier blend that was trapped in floodwater for approximately three days. These furry friends, along with the other felines, are now available for adoption at the Providence Animal Shelter.
Others that have loved ones in Texas but are currently located elsewhere are also highly concerned about spreading awareness of ways to help Harvey victims. This includes Joy Kim, a junior psychology major at Pennsylvania State University. Kim travels away from her parents, oldest sister and extended family in Houston for school, but worries about them during times like this.
“I can’t even imagine what families are going through right now in my home state of Texas, and I wish I could do more hands on work to give back” Kim said.
Out of the goodness of her heart, Kim promoted ways to give back to Texas on her social media pages. This included links to donation sites, and a photo of her in a Texas shirt that she purchased to benefit to a Houston fund.
“The least myself, and others, can do from all the way up here in Pennsylvania, is donate and bring awareness to the situation.”