Another Avenue For Help

Hugh Keogh, President and CEO of the Virginia Chamber of Commerce, just e-mailed the following to its membership. He had shared it earlier in the week with the local chamber executives, and with this posting perhaps we can reach an even wider audience. The letter is from his Mississippi counterpart, Blake Wilson. (No specific advice on help has been received from the Louisiana Chamber)


Mississippi has been devastated by Hurricane Katrina. The damage is much worse and the death toll much higher than what you are seeing and hearing on television.

We are in desperate need of donations — large donations from companies — indivdual servings of pre-packaged, non-perishable food, water — still huge need and it will last for another two weeks, when we will see the efforts shift more toward recovery — new clothing — toiletry items — baby diapers and fomula — rakes, shovels, hammers, nails, generators, tarps.

MEC helped our state establish a Hurricane Recovery Donation Line at – 866-230-8903. Volunteers will take your information and make a match.

Large lot shipments of these items may be trucked to the Multi-Agency Donation Staging Center, 840 Boling Street, Jackson, MS…but please call the donation line first and let them know what you are sending.

Community efforts are making a huge difference. If possible, keep all like items together — and even better if they can be put on pallets and shrink wrapped as like items for shipping. We can still handle even if not on pallets, but it takes more time.

The center cannot accept used clothing or goods.

For more information, go to We will keep this constantly updated.

Although my team has been working non-stop since the disaster, this is the first day we have had email capability and power at our office. The storm was a Category 1 when it hit Jackson, which is 200 miles from the coast.

Thank you for your help.

While this is heartbreaking…the outpouring of support from around this nation has been very heartwarming.

Keep the faith.


I am difficult to reach because we are helping coordinate private-sector relief functions. However my team can reach me directly — please work through them — Peggy Howard is coordinating — 1-800-748-7626.

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  1. Salt Lick Avatar

    Hello Steve — didn’t know if you’d catch my answer if I posted it way down, so I’m telling you here that I read organizations are doing exactly what you suggested — moving in temporary cell towers on trucks. Interesting. I guess I’m behind the times. A friend who joined the military once told me his specialty was “tactical microwave” and for a moment I thought he was a cook.

    subpatre — thanks for the ham radio tip.

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