How to Help Hurricane Harvey Victims from Des Moines

DES MOINES, Iowa -- Many in Houston have lost everything: homes, clothes, cars, pets.   Most of us are a thousand miles away but we feel compelled to help.

“I want to help and the best way to help is being able to give these material things,” said Richard E. Pates, Bishop of Des Moines.  Pates and the local Catholic Charities have helped natural disaster victims in Iowa for over a decade.  He remembers the floods of 2008 and watched as many of the house hold items that were donated often went unused.  

He says if you’re interested in helping there is a more effective way than to do so than giving things: give money. He suggests finding a charity and donating cash to them. They know how to better utilize cash than used clothes or stuffed animals.  Money can also help these people rebuild after the rain stops.

“So much of what’s involved is long-range building. Some buildings have been destroyed and you need to have the wherewithal and cash to bring in those people,” said Bishop Pates.  

There is something else you can do right now in Des Moines to help and it won’t cost you a dime.  “There main local blood center in Houston has been opened for at least a few days,” said Danielle West with Life Serve Blood Centers.  Life Serve has already sent 50 units of blood to Houston.   

“One pint of blood, one donation, can save three lives. So one donation here can save three patients in need,” said West.   There are several mobile blood drive this week and weekend all over the metro.