Dear Samford Community,
There is a tremendous desire among us to do something, anything, that would offer assistance to our surrounding communities during this time of great need. If you've watched the news, no doubt you have heard that volunteers are not being allowed into the hard hit areas as the basic work of emergency recovery must be completed and quickly. After that, we know there will be weeks, if not months of service outreach efforts that we will call upon each of you to consider. Last night I shared with you that today I would communicate needs that are vital to the disaster response at this current time. Each day I will do this, as we work to identify ways we can continue to be of the greatest assistance to the affected communities. For today, here are several ways I would ask you direct your time and attention. I invite you to consider one or more of these three ways you can participate in the work that is ahead of us.
The Christian Service Mission, located at 3600 3rd Avenue South in Birmingham is partnered with numerous churches, community and neighborhood agencies and regularly provides assistance to communities in the form of food, goods, services, shelter, education, you name it. If you participated in the recent Samford Gives Back Day of service, you likely participated in a site that was coordinated by Christian Service Mission.
Pharmacy Students – Tomorrow you have BBQ lunch and band at noon. Dr. Mike Kendrach has asked you to consider bringing donations of items listed below to support relief efforts. All proceeds will be provided to the Christian Service Mission.
At the Avett Brothers Concert on Saturday night, collection efforts will continue and the Avett Brothers themselves have agreed to donate autographed guitar, banjo, and concert posters, that will be given away in a drawing. Your donation of money or items listed below will provide you with an opportunity to participate in this drawing. All proceeds will be provided to the Christian Service Mission.
Only these items will be accepted for donation:
- Diapers of all sizes
- Bottled and Gallon Drinking Water
- Non-Perishable food
- Personal care products (soap, wipes, toothpaste, combs, brushes, etc)
- Feminine care products
- Clothing (t-shirts, pants, undergarments, etc.)
- Other items that can be for immediate need (new towels, linens, laundry detergent, etc)
Christian Service Mission (3600 3rd Ave. S.) has asked for volunteers to come at 10:00 AM on Saturday morning to help receive donations and help sort and organize donations so that they can be quickly sent out for distribution. Director Tracy Hipps stated that trucks from area churches will be arriving with donations (we'll be one of those trucks at the start of next week after our collection), and he expects volunteers will be needed to help gather items from cargo trucks, car trunks, whatever pulls up to the curb. No matter the number that shows up Saturday morning, Tracy Hipps says that there will be work to do and volunteers will be vital to the operation.
From Alabama Possible you can review numerous links to community agencies and register online for volunteer opportunities that will communicated to you as soon as they are able to create opportunities for registered individuals and groups.
It is likely that you heard from at least one person that had a personal connection to the tragedies across the state and perhaps in states prior to the storms that affected Alabama this week. Our own Samford family has been affected as employees, students, and alumni have shared how the storms have damaged or destroyed their homes, and tragically, the lives of loved ones as well.
Tomorrow both Reid Chapel and Hodges Chapel will be open from 12-1 for silent prayer. Students, faculty, staff and members of the Birmingham community who wish to join for silent prayer are invited to be present for any or all of that hour.
Tuesday May 3rd at 10:00am in Reid Chapel there will be a prayer service for those affected by recent storms. This is not a Convocation event, but simply a service for faculty, staff and students to join together to pray for those in our community who are suffering and in need.
Please know that counseling is available should you need to talk to someone during this time. Please call Counseling at x2065, located in temporary offices on the 3rd floor of the University Center, in the Career Development Center conference room area.
Continue to check www.samford.edu for information about how you can donate and serve through a variety of local agencies as well as assist students, faculty, and staff at Samford through donating to the emergency assistance fund. I will continue to update you daily on additional ways you can give, serve, and pray as we join hearts and hands in support of the greater community around us.