Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- Sandy’s victims are still desperately in need of everyday items, but the Salvation Army is running into a problem delivering donations. They don’t have a place to keep all the items, so the Upstate and Central New York director of Disaster Services is searching for warehouse space on Long Island.
The Salvation Army is mobile. They’ve been setting up tents to hand out meals and delivering hot drinks from their truck, but they don't have a central place to house donated goods. They say warehouse space is hard to come by after the storm.
“It's desperate, yes. You're talking about an area that is just devastated, so a lot of the warehousing space is not usable,” explained Leslie Vattimo, Divisional Director of Disaster Services for the Salvation Army.
It's not usable, but very necessary. As power and gas services resume, shelters will close down, making it harder to reach victims in one central area.
“There does need to be a distribution system set up in the affected area to get it to folks who are trying to get their homes cleared or reestablish their residence in their home, and so it’s a distribution situation that we confront,” said Major Donald Hostetler, Divisional Commander, Salvation Army.
When the Salvation Army is able to truck down the items, they'll be asking for very specific donated goods, not used clothes - those will stay at local thrift stores. They want to take down things like shovels, cleaning supplies, and new winter coats.
But don't drop off those items just yet.
“Hold on to them until we put out the call so that we can stage and get them down there in the most efficient way possible,” Hostetler continued.
Once they have a warehouse secured, they'll be asking for as many donations as possible. They plan to be helping downstate and New Jersey families not just for months, but for years. Donate to the Salvation Army:
You can still donate to Sandy relief through the Salvation Army. This Saturday is “Dome Donation Day.” The Salvation Army encourages people at the game to give a monetary gift via text or online
. They’ll also be taking donations that will stay local. You may also drop some loose change in the red kettles or bring a canned good.