Hurricane Ian

How to Help People in Florida Affected by Hurricane Ian

Check out this list of local and national organizations mobilizing to help those who suffered most.

By Kim Doleatto

Flooding in South Sarasota County

Flooding in South Sarasota County

On Florida's west coast, Hurricane Ian made landfall as a Category 4 storm with winds of 150 mph, bringing torrential rains, flooding and record storm surges in Naples and Fort Myers. So far, more than 2 million people are without power statewide and thousands are unable to go home as result. Check out these local and national organizations that are helping.

Mothers Helping Mothers

This local Sarasota nonprofit is collecting financial donations to help provide food and gas gift cards, hygiene and baby essentials. Double your gift by clicking here and selecting MHM as the recipient. Used household items and volunteers are also needed.

Matter Brothers

The family-owned furniture store chain is partnering with the area's United Way nonprofits to collect donations at all four of its locations–Naples, Sarasota, Pinellas Park and Tarpon Springs–from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Click here for the donation wishlist and to learn more.

Goodwill Manasota

Goodwill is accepting donations of material goods and non-perishable food items for local food banks All Faiths Food Bank and Food Bank of Manatee at all its donation and retail centers. The nonprofit is partnering with the Red Cross and local Emergency Operations Centers to provide vouchers that can be used at any Goodwill stores with a referral from the Red Cross, EOC or approved Goodwill agency. Click here to donate and learn more. 

Manatee Community Foundation

Manatee Community Foundation’s Disaster Relief Fund is supporting nonprofits serving Manatee County residents with Hurricane Ian relief. Through its partnership with the Bishop Parker Foundation, there's a 1:1 match for donors, up to $75,000. Click here to donate and learn more.  

KW Cares

Keller Williams Cares is accepting donations at three locations from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 3355 Clark Road, #103, Sarasota; 4152 Lakewood Ranch Blvd., Bradenton; and 8210 Lakewood Ranch Blvd., Bradenton. Wish list items include cleaning supplies, first aid kits, hygiene products, nonperishable food, bottled water and baby supplies. For more details, click here.

Community Foundation of Sarasota County

The Community Foundation is accepting contributions to its Suncoast Disaster Recovery Fund. The Patterson Foundation, a Sarasota-based nonprofit, has already contributed a a $500,000 gift and has offered a 1:1 match of $750,000 for additional contributions. The Community Foundation will partner with its network of community foundations in Florida and the southeastern United States to distribute funds, prioritizing response and recovery efforts in Sarasota, Manatee, DeSoto and Charlotte counties.

Gulf Coast Community Foundation

The Foundation has activated its Hurricane Ian Disaster Relief Fund. The fund is fueled by an $800,000 initiative to support those most impacted by Hurricane Ian. Donors' contributions to the fund will be matched by the $800,000 and can be made online here. Checks can be mailed to Gulf Coast Community Foundation Headquarters at 601 Tamiami Trail S., Venice FL, 34285 with “Hurricane Ian” in the memo line.

The fund will be used primarily to support recovery and rebuilding, with a focus on southern Sarasota County, Venice, North Port, Englewood, Charlotte County, Lee County and DeSoto County. The Foundation has also set up a form for nonprofit partners that need assistance. Local nonprofits serving Sarasota and its surrounding communities can request funds to assist with their relief efforts here.

The Education Foundation of Sarasota County

This is the only organization with the singular purpose of investing in Sarasota County public schools. It funds over 200 classroom grants annually, collaborates with schools to pilot programs and works to ensure students graduate prepared for a post-secondary pathway. Now, it has established a Hurricane Ian Disaster Relief & Recovery Fund to accept monetary donations to support Sarasota County Schools and its 5,000-plus employees. Click here to donate.

All Faiths Food Bank

All Faiths Food Bank is the only food bank and largest hunger relief organization in Sarasota and DeSoto counties and provides millions of meals annually. It is distributing food and water throughout the region. Donate and find out how to volunteer here.

Salvation Army of Sarasota County

Salvation Army has deployed aid and provided shelter and food and personnel to meet the immediate needs of survivors and first responders before, during, and after Hurricane Ian’s catastrophic landfall in Florida. Donate here.

Five-O-Donut Co.

This beloved doughnut chain is doubling as a donation collection site for the Cajun Navy Ground Force, a nonprofit that has boots on the ground in Fort Myer. Its volunteers are performing water rescues and other services. All Sarasota Five-O-Donut Co. locations are collecting water, diapers, personal hygiene items and nonperishable foods. Your donation gets you a free doughnut, and 12 donations get you a free half-dozen.

Humane Society of Sarasota County

The Humane Society of Sarasota County (HSSC) is currently operating as a hub in Southwest Florida for animals that need to be transported from other animal shelters that suffered major structural damage as a result of Hurricane Ian. Many of our shelter partners can no longer provide care to their animals due to a lack of power and water, staffing shortages, and facility damage. If you can help, HSSC is accepting donations and also calling for people to foster a shelter cat or dog, which will lessen the burden of care for HSSC staff (HSSC will provide all supplies). To donate, click here. To fill out a foster application, click here or email [email protected].

Save Our Seabirds

The 150-plus resident and rehabilitating birds under Save Our Seabirds' care survived Hurricane Ian, but high winds brought down trees that destroyed its two largest habitats. Visit www.saveourseabirds.org to make a donation to its “Rebuild SOS Fund"—insurance will not pay the $125,000 price tag on these critically needed repairs. We will re-open to the public when it is safe for birds and visitors.

Compound Board Shop

The shop has teamed up with a boat captain with a 40-foot vessel to get supplies to South County. Items can be dropped off at Compound Board Shop between 10-5 p.m. or at the Venice Yacht Club at 1330 Tarpon Center Drive, which is where the boat is located.  Items needed include air mattresses, towels, non-perishable food and cleaning supplies. For more information, click here.

Tidewell Foundation Hurricane Ian Fund

Tidewell Foundation is seeking support for its not-for-profit Tidewell Hospice and Empath Health affiliates following Hurricane Ian. Tidewell Hospice, Empath Home Health and other Empath Health employees have been affected by damage to their vehicles and homes, even while helping vulnerable patients meet their urgent healthcare needs. Tidewell and Empath Health facilities in several counties in our service area have sustained system and facility damage, as well. The cost for response and temporary operations is expected to be significant. To donate, click here.

Wildlife Inc.

Wildlife, Inc., a wildlife rescue and rehabilitation center in Bradenton Beach, is operating without phone, power and Internet and seeking donations. If you find a baby animal in need, keep them warm and bring them to the organization at 2207 Avenue B, Bradenton Beach; the bridge to Anna Maria Island is open. Donate through Wildlife Inc.'s Facebook page here.

Sarasota County Government

For those 18 years and older seeking emergency volunteer opportunities following the storm, fill out this form to get matched with relief efforts.

Dakin Dairy

The farm experienced significant damage from Hurricane Ian. It needs a farrier to help treat its cows' feet, as a lot of debris has ended up in the animals' stalls, as well as plumbers, electricians and welders. "Our barns are in shambles and we don't have power to run the fans to keep the girls cool," Dakin's owners wrote on social media. For more information, click here.

Operation BBQ Relief

This organization has sent a massive deployment of semi-trucks, tents and equipment to Port Charlotte; church and civic groups can call and request meals for the masses to be picked up. The group is scheduled to cook upwards of 60,000 meals daily with a setup of the size of two football fields in Port Charlotte. They plan to serve meals for at least two weeks. To support or volunteer, click here.

F45 Training Lakewood Ranch South

F45 Training and CryoXL will be collecting items brought to distribution points in affected areas. Priority items include bottled water, canned food, dry clothes, socks, shoes, tools, hygiene products, first-aid kits, blankets, dog and cat food, power tools, saws, flashlights and batteries. For more information, click here.

World Central Kitchen

This global nonprofit organization backed by celebrity chef José Andrés helps get food to first responders and residents following natural disasters. It began mobilizing chefs in affected areas on Thursday and is focused on areas between Tampa and Naples, including Fort Myers, Cape Coral and Sarasota, where it partnered with Michael's on East to provide thousands of hot meals to hurricane survivors. To learn more, volunteer or donate, click here. Click here and local nonprofit, The Pettingell Family Foundation, will match financial donations up to $10,000.

Red Cross 

Red Cross is accepting blood donations and volunteers and is among the first responders offering shelter and other services to victims of Hurricane Ian. More here.

American Humane Society

This organization helps animals in need of rescue, shelter or protection during and after natural disasters. Find ways to help here.

Caring for Others

The catastrophic relief program of this national organization provides new clothing and furniture to families and individuals who have been devastated by natural elements beyond their control and are forced to choose between clothing and other basic necessities. More info here.

Direct Relief

Active in the U.S. and globally, Direct Relief establishes funds and grants cash to organizations working to help the hardest-hit areas following natural disasters, with the goal of bolstering healthcare networks and capabilities of local communities. Info here.

Americares

This national nonprofit sends medicine and relief supplies to help meet the health needs of storm survivors. It also provides emergency funding to help repair damaged health facilities and restore health services disrupted by the storm. Find out more here.

Feeding Florida

This nonprofit works closely with the food banks in its network to provide food, water, and resources to those affected by Hurricane Ian. Here's more information.

CAN Community Health

This private nonprofit has been serving the needs of the HIV community for over 26 years. Its clinics offer medical, dental, psychological care and lifestyle counseling to all patients, regardless of their financial situation, insurance status or ability to pay. It will be collecting donations at its Sarasota headquarters at 4440 Fruitville Road. A wishlist includes water, bedding, blankets, socks, hygiene products, diapers, towels, wipes, formula, flashlights, rakes, candles, shovels and nonperishable foods. Email [email protected] for more information. Click here to learn more about this organization.

Farm Share

This statewide food bank supplies food pantries with nutritious food donations for the 3.9 million Floridians going hungry today. Pantry sites include community centers, churches, nonprofit organizations and community food distributions. Click here to learn more.

Worden Farm

This organic, family-owned farm in Punta Gorda took a direct hit from Hurricane Ian. It supplies fresh, seasonal produce across the region through its subscription weekly box programs and farmers' markets, and needs help recovering. Click here to donate.

Convoy of Hope

This international nonprofit is a humanitarian, faith-based organization dedicated to feeding the hungry and helping communities affected by natural disasters. To learn more, click here.

CORE Response

Community Organized Relief Effort is coordinating with local partners and government to support the Florida communities most impacted by Hurricane Ian by assessing needs with partners to help families get back into their homes and support heavily impacted communities. Click here to learn more.

Ian Response Fund

A coalition of organizations has launched an IanResponse.org fund to address the needs of affected communities. It is run by a group that came together after Hurricane Irma, including Florida Rising, Dream Defenders, Florida Immigrant Coalition, FL Jobs With Justice and Faith in Florida. 

Florida Disaster Fund

This public-private partnership has been set up at volunteerflorida.org/donatefdf. To donate, you can text DISASTER to 20222, or mail a check to the Volunteer Florida Foundation at 1545 Raymond Diehl Road, Suite 250, Tallahassee, FL, 32308.

United Way Suncoast

United Way Suncoast is currently accepting donations to its Disaster Recovery Fund to assist those affected by Hurricane Ian in its five-county region: Hillsborough, Pinellas, Manatee, Sarasota and DeSoto. This fund will help United Way Suncoast meet storm-related needs and support long-term recovery throughout the affected regions. The focus is on mid- and long-term recovery. Click here to give.

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