JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Operation Sandy Relief is in full swing. First Coast News has teamed up with United Way, Mission Harvest, and Watson realty to collect donations.
Thanks to generous First Coast residents we've already collected more than 15,000 pounds of items to help those hit hard by Sandy, but more is needed.
From first aid kits to canned food and toys, Thomas Sparks with Mission Harvest sorts all ofthe donations into bins. If we can fill up the 18-wheeler parked outside of East Adams Street he says it will help two to three thousand families.
"We don't catch the large cities and areas. We go to the smaller areas where there is not much help. We have people already standing by as soon as we can get this load together. We are going to take it up there, and they are going to hand pack it into each car and get it out to the people immediately," said Sparks.
All day long folks like the Nunleys have helped meet the need donating bags of goods including teddy bears for the youngest storm victims.
"We need to share. We are so blessed, and we need to share with people who don't have anything right now. It's tough up there. My office is up there. I'm flying up there tomorrow so you don't realize the devastation until you actually see it, and we've been through it before," said the Nunleys.
Brittany Henne, the wife of Jags quarterback Chad Henne, heard about Operation Sandy Relief and decided to take action.
"I saw on the news that you guys were doing drives, and I figured it's so easy not to have time so I wanted to make it a centralized location where the Jags, the wives can bring donations to me in my car before the game and I'll deliver them. It's just easy and convenient," said Henne.
With family in the hard hit areas and a home in South Florida in a city that's been hit before she said she felt compelled to help.
"I encourage people to donate because we could be in this same boat at any given time," said Henne.
The downtown Jacksonville location is one of five locations where you can drop off donations this weekend. Volunteers will be standying by to take your items through the Jags game. You can also donate money to the Red Cross there.
You can also drop off your donations at Julington Creek Plantation Club Saturday until 8pm and Sunday from 8am until 7pm. There are also three Vystarlocations on Kernan Blvd, County Road 210 in St. Augustine and Village Square Parkway on Fleming Island until 7:30pm Saturday and Sunday from 10am until 2pm.
Clickhere for more information.
ITEMS NEEDED FOR DONATION
Water - 1 liter or smaller bottles for easier transport.
Food - Canned, pop top preferred that is easy to prepare with or without heat.
Food - Dry such as rice [5 and 10 pound bags] and beans.
Disposable Charcoal grills and charcoal
Matches [in zip log bags]
Powdered Milk, Baby Formula and bottles
Pet supplies and food
First Aid Kits - Items for the kits as well
Battery Operated Radios
Flashlights and batteries
Paper Cups, Napkins, and plastic utensils
Non-Electric cans opener and Utility Knifes
Plastic zip lock bags
Matches in Zip Lock bags
Personal Care items such as soap, toilet paper, wipes, garbage bags, disinfectant and bleach
Clothes, especially baby and children
Blankets and sleeping bags