If you’re reading this, most likely you’re a chef. And, chefs, of course, are at the front lines of caring for people’s needs–especially personal chefs, who create menus and prepare food lovingly for clients.

So, let’s extend this compassion to those who are facing devastation in Texas, thanks to Hurricane Harvey. I don’t know about you, but last weekend as I was watching the news and saw the flooding I got right on the American Red Cross website to make a donation.

I’m sure you’re experiencing the same reaction–but perhaps you want to make donations to other organizations. Thanks to Texas Monthly, which compiled this, here’s a list of various agencies that could use your support so they can help folks on the ground:

  • San Antonio-based The Texas Diaper Bank is creating a relief kit for families with very small children who need clean diapers during the flooding and evacuations.
  • The Driscoll Children’s Hospital in Corpus Christi is up and running, and accepting financial donations. Live in the area? Please donate blood.
  • Even if you’re not a pet owner you surely have compassion for those companions who got displaced during the storm. The SPCA of Texas is taking in hundreds of animals transferred from shelters on the coast who aren’t safe where they are right now. You can donate to the organization to help defray the costs. For any of you in Austin who want to work with a local org, Austin Pets Alive! is also helping and has similar needs—cash, to keep operating, and volunteers to foster animals. They can also use certain pet supplies: large plastic or metal bins with lids to store food, leashes and collars, cat litter, large brooms, cat-specific beds, and liquid laundry soap.
  • People with disabilities need a lot of help during this crisis. Portlight has provided inclusive relief to people with disabilities for 20 years—including in Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy. It’s now working to make sure necessary medical equipment and assistive technology is available for those who had to evacuate and to make sure that they’re are able to get to safety. They accept donations via PayPal.
  • If you’re taking prescription drugs, you can imagine the fear of those in the heart of the disaster worrying about access to their drugs or those needed by family members. Direct Relief USA offers prescription drugs and other medical supplies to those who need it in emergency situations, and works with clinics and primary care doctors to ensure that the drugs and medical equipment are available to the people who need it. They’re accepting financial contributions.

More conventional charities are also taking donations. Here’s a list compiled by NPR:

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner established a Harvey relief fund at The Greater Houston Community Foundation. The organization connects donors with a network of nonprofits and innovative solutions in the social sector.

GlobalGiving, which calls itself the largest global crowdfunding community, has a goal of raising $2 million for its Harvey relief fund. Funds will be used first for immediate needs of food, water and shelter and then transition to long-term recovery efforts.

United Way of Greater Houston has launched a relief fund for storm-related needs and recovery. The organization says it already maintains a disaster relief fund but anticipates the needs of Harvey will far exceed those existing resources.

GoFundMe, the social fundraising site, has created a landing page that gathers the campaigns on its platform related to Harvey.

The Salvation Army says it is providing food and water to first responders and preparing for massive feeding efforts for residents.

Send Relief and Southern Baptist Disaster Relief says its teams began responding before Harvey made landfall and continues on-the-ground relief work.

Samaritan’s Purse is accepting donations as well as volunteers for Harvey disaster relief for the coming months.

And, here’s what should hit you where you live… The Houston Press has compiled a list of food banks that are serving the population. Even if you live in the area, the best way to help is through donations so they can buy what they need.

Houston Food Bank
832-369-9390
houstonfoodbank.org

Galveston Food Bank
409-945-4232
galvestoncountyfoodbank.org

Food Bank of the Golden Crescent (Victoria)
361-578-0591
victoriafoodbank.org
Closed Friday

Corpus Christi Food Bank
361-887-6291
foodbankcc.com

Southeast Texas Food Bank (Beaumont)
409-839-8777
setxfoodbank.org

Food Bank of the Rio Grande Valley (Pharr)
956-682-8101
foodbankrgv.com

Brazos Valley Food Bank (Bryan)
979-779-3663
bvfb.org

Central Texas Food Bank (Austin)
512-282-2111
centraltexasfoodbank.org

San Antonio Food Bank
210-337-3663
safoodbank.org

For more information on all of these food banks go to feedingtexas.org.

And, of course, you want to make sure that your generosity is going to the right place. Before donating to an unfamiliar charity, check it out. One place to start is Charity Navigator.

Finally, are you in the region and being impacted by Hurricane Harvey? What do you and your community need? How can we, your fellow personal chefs, help?

How have you helped out the folks impacted by Hurricane Harvey? Are there any other organizations we should contribute to?

Not an APPCA member? Now’s the perfect time to join! Go to personalchef.com to learn about all the benefits that come with membership.

And if you are a member and have a special talent to share on this blog, let us know so we can feature you!