Yesterday, a devastating tornado ravaged Oklahoma, claiming at least 24 lives (many of them children) and injuring dozens more. Those looking to aid those affected can do so through the following outlets.
To donate to the American Red Cross, text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief. You can also donate online or by calling 1-800-REDCROSS. The Red Cross is overseeing shelters, delivery of hot meals, and is working to link loved ones via the program Safe and Well.
The Salvation Army is sending out disaster response teams and mobile feeding units to help those affected. Donations can be made online, or by texting STORM to 80888 to contribute $10. Also, donations can be made by phone via 1-800-SAL-ARMY. Checks to the Salvation Army can be sent to The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 12600, Oklahoma City, OK., 73157. The words "Oklahoma Tornado Relief" should be included on the check.
Operation USA is also providing relief to community-based health organizations in Oklahoma. Text AID to 50555 to donate $10. Donations can also be made by phone (1-800-678-7255), online, or by sending a check made out to Operation USA to 7421 Beverly Blvd., PH, Los Angeles, CA 90036. Also, the organization is looking for donations of bulk quantities of disaster-appropriate supplies.
The United Way of Central Oklahoma has set up a disaster relief fund, specifically for the tornado. Donations can be made online, or by sending a check to United Way of Central Oklahoma, P.O. Box 837, Oklahoma City, OK , 73101. A notation of "May Tornado Relief" should be made.
The food bank network Feeding America has vowed to deliver truckloads of food, water, and supplies to those in need in Oklahoma, in addition to setting up additional supply and distribution sites as needed. Donations can be made online or by calling 1-800-910-5524.
Direct Relief is providing medical assistance and personal hygiene items (like infection control products, soap, shampoo, diapers, and baby formula) to those affected by the tornado. Donations can be made here or by calling 1-800-676-1638.
Finally, the Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief has deployed over 80 volunteers to assist the devastation. Tax-deductible donations to its disaster relief ministry can be made online, by calling (405) 942-3800, or by mailing a check to BGO Attn: Disaster Relief 3800 N. May Ave. Oklahoma City, OK 73112.
To avoid scams from those taking advantage of the tragedy, the Federal Trade Comission offered tips here.