Being part of NEA means being part of a family—a huge and caring family—that reaches out to members when disaster strikes. We are stepping forward in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.
The hurricane made landfall in Rockport, Tex. on Friday, August 25, and in the aftermath of the Category 4 storm, Houston and other communities have been swamped by the most extreme rain event in our nation’s history. The images of flattened buildings, devastated neighborhoods, and roadways inundated by unprecedented floods are horrifying and frightening.
Texans are rising to the tremendous challenge, helping their friends, neighbors, and even complete strangers find shelter and safety. We’ve seen daring rescues by dedicated state and federal public service workers, Red Cross volunteers, and everyday people who are doing whatever they can to help, marshaling any available resources to aid relief efforts. This is the American spirit at its best, when we summon unity and compassion to get through a crisis as one. But the storm is not yet over. We all must be part of relief efforts.
Our union is coming together to help the thousands of NEA members affected. We’ve established the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, www.nea.org/harvey, to assist our members in getting back on their feet. Your donations will help them replace belongings and meet the many expenses they will certainly face.
Estimates are that as many as one-third of NEA members in Texas have been impacted or will be in the days to come. In many cases, they’ve lost cars and homes or sustained other serious property damage. They are blessed to be alive, but they will struggle financially and emotionally to rebuild their lives. Unfortunately, Louisiana may sustain serious damage from the storm as well.
Please donate to the relief fund to help our sisters and brothers. If you have been affected by Hurricane Harvey, we are here for you and will do all we can to help. Our thoughts and prayers are with you, your families, friends, and communities. Please know that you are not alone.
As educators, we know that when disasters like this occur, children are often traumatized and need us to help them heal. Resources are available at www.nea.org/harvey to deal with your students’ fears and questions.
All of us can play a role in rebuilding the lives of those impacted by this storm, standing strong for our members, and mending communities. On behalf of affected NEA members, thank you for your prayers and generosity. We will help our sisters and brothers find their way to brighter days and be their anchor through this storm.