United Way Connects Eastern Iowa Middle School Students With Hurricane Sandy Victims

Lisbon Middle School students were able to connect with victims of Hurricane Sandy. The school called United Way in Cedar Rapids, which then connected the school with people in need.

This podcast shares the details:

doug podcast 2013 hurricane sandy 211

Here’s a transcript of the podcast:

Christoph Trappe: Hi there. Christoph Trappe here with United Way of East Central Iowa and today I’m joined by Doug Griesenauer who is our community building manager in our education area. Welcome Doug!

Doug Griesenauer: Glad to be here.

Christoph Trappe: And one of the things, of course, that United Way works on is connecting people with things that they can help with that they’re passionate about. So Doug has a story to share that happened recently where he connected somebody with an opportunity that they really wanted to help with. So Doug, can you share that with us?

Doug Griesenauer: Yeah, definitely. I got in contact, actually I was contacted by Ian Dye, who’s the principal at Lisbon Middle School, in which right after Hurricane Sandy hit on the East Coast, one of his sixth graders came up to him—she has a pen pal there—and she was interested in helping out the area over there. After they found out that the area that the pen pal was at was fairly well off, you know, didn’t need too many extra supplies, Ian decided to contact us to see if we knew of an area that was harder hit.

So I contacted Chris Juett here, who manages our 2-1-1 program, who contacted the national service of 2-1-1, which then got us in contact with United Way of Monmouth County in New Jersey. That United Way then, you know, since it was right into one of the harder hit areas of Hurricane Sandy, got us into contact with actually a middle school over there at Kingsbury School District which was then able to give us exact information of exactly what they needed, you know, kind of supply lists and information like that. So we brought that over back to Ian and the sixth graders really rallied together, brought over the elementary school, really everyone kind of came together and got fourteen packages of supplies that were specifically tailored for that school. So it was very exciting to see kind of the school district from people who didn’t even know people kind of really helping out and getting information to bring supplies that these schools really needed. It was very great to see.

Christoph Trappe: And you know, obviously you can’t see us because we’re not on TV we’re on a podcast, we are just sitting here smiling because this is such a great way of helping people and also helping the people who want to help. But 2-1-1 of course if we can mention that quickly, 2-1-1 is our – – you can call in to get help for basic needs questions. Sometimes, for example, if somebody gets laid off you can call there and get help. 2-1-1 is also online now—firstcallfor helpiowa.org—and you can search the database. Now that’s only the database for Iowa, which of course is helpful if you’re looking for something locally, but that entire process, how long did it take to get that information Doug?

Doug Griesenauer: It was very speedy. It was spectacular. Just a few emails there and back and then we got information.

Christoph Trappe: Yeah so that’s great to hear the United Way network working together helping people helping other people. Thanks for joining us Doug.

Middle schoolers reach across country to assist those in need (Mount Vernon-Lisbon Sun)

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Posted in 211, Education, News, Podcasts, United Way of East Central Iowa

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