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Nearly 50 students involved in Lafayette Activities Forum and the Landis Community Outreach Center have helped the Red Cross provide relief to those affected by the flooding brought by Tropical Storm Ivan.

Mathematics major Kate Robbins ’05 (Wilbraham, Mass.), LAF executive chair, has organized volunteer efforts, working closely with Char Gray, director of the Landis Community Outreach Center, and Stephanie Cote, Landis Center coordinator. Immediately after the flooding, students distributed information downtown on how residents could obtain food, shelter, clothing, financial guidance, and medications. On the second and third days of volunteering, students went to St. Anthony’s Youth Center in Easton, which served as an emergency Red Cross site and shelter, to distribute toiletries, children’s toys, and items enabling residents to rid their homes of mud and prevent mold growth.

Students collected donations from residence halls and McKelvy House and set up a table at the Homecoming “Block pARTy” where visitors could see pictures of the flooding, sign a banner, write their thoughts about the flooding, and make donations. A total of 271 donations were received. Local businesses also were asked for donations; contributors included Campus Pizza, Marsilios, and Coffeeworks. The Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority and Kappa Delta Rho fraternity held a car wash that netted $400. All told, students raised $1,550 for Red Cross flood relief in Pennsylvania.

In addition, donations from a food and clothing drive will be given to the Salvation Army.

“To me, one of the most valuable aspects of this project was the connection made with the Lehigh Valley Red Cross,” says Robbins. “To our knowledge, Lafayette College and the American Red Cross have not previously had the opportunity to work together. This experience has not only given our students the opportunity to interact with the Easton community, it has also provided a valuable connection for outreach projects in the future.”

Categorized in: Students