How donations are distributed to flood victims in South Carolina

Columbia, S.C. (WJBF) – Many organizations across the CSRA have been collecting bottled water for flood victims in Columbia, South Carolina.

“Bottled water is gold, right now,” said Samantha Jones, who is the Major Gifts Officer for the American Red Cross.

That’s how American Red Cross workers are treating the 30,000 cases of water in their warehouse, but it’s more than just a one step process.

“This is the distribution part and all the water comes in here and is counted and goes to the bulk area, just back out there, where the ERVs {emergency response vehicles} come and the vehicles come to go ahead and disperse the water to the different locations,” said Jones.

The warehouse was created on the spot on Monday after the floods hit Columbia and the surrounding areas.

“I could not believe the devastation because it happened so quickly, and just knowing I have so many friends who were affected by it, their houses are completely under water,” said Jones.

American Red Cross volunteers came together in hours to start assisting people in need.

“One of the most astounding things about this job, in general, is we come from all over the country, and we come together, and we’ve mostly never worked together before,” said Red Cross volunteer Greg Clover.

It’s not just water that the organization is focusing on, 46,000 meals and snacks and 4,500 relief kits have been given out this week.

“We’ve had a lot of people that have stepped up and donated water, but I think the greatest way to make an impact here in South Carolina is donating money because that’s where we can put it to its best use where it’s needed,” said Joe Hayes, who is executive director for the Northern South Carolina Chapter for American Red Cross.

Once donations are accounted for at the warehouse, they are distributed to shelters like the one at St. Andrews Middle School. There, people can find solace and have everything taken care of until they can get back to normal life.

“The big thing that kind of drives me is, we go to bed at night. You know you’ve made a difference in someone else’s life, and that’s satisfying,” said Red Cross volunteer Richard Nye.

In the last couple of days that we’ve collected water in the CSRA, with our Giving Your Best partners, we’ve also collected $47,000 in monetary donations for the American Red Cross that they are using to help these victims. You can still donate by clicking here, or by texting REDCROSS to 90999.

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