Oklahoma tornadoes: How to get help
May 24, 2013 (The Oklahoman - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
If you are looking for help after the recent storms, these agencies are offering shelter and additional support, including charging for your wireless devices.
To report a Moore resident missing, contact the Moore Police Department at 799-4357. Reports of missing Oklahoma City residents can be made by calling 297-1129 or walk-in reports are taken at St. Andrew's Church, 2727 SW 119.
Find someone or register yourself safe
People can register on the Red Cross Safe and Well website at www.redcross.org and clicking on the "List Yourself or Search Registrants" link under "How to Get Help". Those who can't access a computer can call (800) RED CROSS -- (800) 733-2767 -- and one of the operators can help you register.
Bulk shopping and free power
Central Oklahoma Sam's Clubs are temporarily waiving membership requirements to support residents and communities affected by the tornadoes. The clubs are establishing free power stations to recharge mobile devices, laptop computers and other electronic devices. Locations are 3400 W Main in Norman; 5510 SW 5; 9000 NW Passage and 1900 Memorial in Oklahoma City; and 6521 SE 29 in Midwest City.
From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Batteries Plus, a national retailer with locations in Oklahoma City, is distributing batteries, flashlights and lanterns to those in need of backup power and lighting supplies. The company has donated $125,000 of these products to relief efforts, and those who need them can pick them up at the First Baptist Church of Moore, 301 NE 27.
--AT&T is offering charging stations for electronic devices. Locations include: AT&T Store, 2670 S Service Road, Moore; AT&T's Mobile Sales Store at the Moore Community Center, 301 S Howard; Moore Walmart, 501 SW 19; Walmart Neighborhood Market, 640 SE 4, Moore; and Best Buy, 2700 S Service Road, Moore.
--Verizon Wireless is deploying multiple charging stations to central Oklahoma. Charging stations are equipped with emergency phones, Internet access, laptop computers and charging capability. Locations are: Red Cross Shelter, 201 S Howard in Moore, Home Depot parking lot, SW 19 and Telephone Rd. in Moore, Shawnee High School, 1001 N Kennedy Shawnee; and Walmart parking lot, 501 SW 19. A mobile support unit for residents of Moore and surrounding areas will be located at the Red Cross Shelter at 201 S Howard in Moore. This unit is equipped with emergency phones, charging stations and Internet capability.
--U.S. Cellular has set up two mobile charging units to provide a power source for charging wireless devices, offer phone calls and provide free Internet access. Charging station locations are at Lowe's, 1501 S Interstate 35 Service Road in Moore, and the University of Oklahoma, 1524 Asp Ave. in Norman. The mobile charging locations will also be giving away chargers and batteries for those in need.
--Customers with questions can call customer service by dialing *611 from their cellphones or (888) 944-9400 from a landline.
Needed items and supplies
--Capitol Hill Baptist Church, 304 SW 134 in Oklahoma City between Santa Fe and Western is offering shelter, clothing, showers, water, food and hygiene items from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily. They are expected to receive a truckload of wheel barrows, shovels and other work gear by Thursday afternoon. Call 799-9799. --Science Museum Oklahoma will open its doors to those affected by the tornadoes in Shawnee and Moore with proof of residence. The museum will serve as a drop-off point for relief donations.
--The American Red Cross is offering meals and snacks to affected residents at the Absentee Shawnee Tribe Resource, 1970 156th Avenue NE.
--To find displaced animals, a website has been set up where found animals and their locations will be listed. Go online to www.Okclostpets.com.
--Central OK Humane Society is accepting donations to be used to help animals hurt or displaced in the storm. To donate, go online to OKhumane.org.
--Animal Resource Center is taking in stray pets. The center is in need of supplies (dog food, etc). 7941 S I-35 Service Rd. (I-35 and Shields), 604-2892.
--Organizations that provide support for dogs and owners affected by the tornadoes can receive assistance from the American Kennel Club and AKC Companion Animal Recovery Canine Support and Relief Fund. Pet owners and shelters in need can call (212) 696-8228 or email email@example.com for more information. People who would like to donate to the relief fund can go to www.okcdogs.org.
--Mercy Medical Center is set up in a medical tent on SW 134 between Santa Fe and Western, providing tetanus shots and treating minor injuries. The hospital is providing medications people may have lost in the tornado, such as insulin, inhalers, blood pressure medications.
--From 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, the Oklahoma City-County Health Department and Blue Cross/Blue Shield Caring Van will be set up in the atrium of the Moore-Norman Technology Center at 13301 S Pennsylvania Ave., to administer tetanus vaccinations. Tetanus shots are recommended for anyone who hasn't received a tetanus booster shot within the last ten years. Tetanus is also known as "lockjaw", which can develop when Clostridium tetani bacteria causes an infection in the body.
--Fresenius Medical Care has set up a hotline at (800) 626-1297 for people who are on dialysis but are without power. Patients can call about local treatment options.
--McBride Orthopedic Hospital Clinic is offering priority orthopedic care to all tornado victims. Call 230-9270.
--The Dean McGee Eye Institute will offer an eye triage clinic to emergency responders and those affected by the tornado at the Moore Community Center, 301 S Howard Ave. Dr. Dana Garber will examine eyes and offer care for those who have sustained minor eye injuries or whose eye glasses were lost or damaged in the storm and cleanup. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday and Friday. For more information, call 271-6005.
--The American Cancer Society wants to help cancer patients affected by tornadoes keep up their treatments. The group will help connect patients and services, help get patients to and from appointments, assist with lodging for those displaced, and offer information about local relief efforts that can assist with day to day needs. For information, call (800) 227-2345.
--The JD McCarty Center, Durable Medical Equipment and Oklahoma Healthcare Authority are partnering with other medical industry companies to repair and replace damaged or missing medical equipment such as wheelchairs. Call the center at 307-2800 and ask for DME triage. Also, anyone with a child with special needs who may need temporary assistance should contact the center and ask for a social worker.
--RX Open is an initiative of the biopharmaceutical supply chain to make sure medicine continues to flow to citizens in areas impacted by major disasters. The Rx Open tool is now live at www.RxOpen.org.
--Variety Care in Oklahoma City is offering to replace people's medication lost in the Monday's tornado. People should call 632-6688 and representatives will be at some of the shelters.
--Dr. Kenneth Guthrie, 13421 N Pennsylvania Ave., is offering free eye exams for victims who lost glasses or contacts or had eye injuries. For information, call 753-9006. Also, Eyemart Express is making and donating free glasses.
--Vision Source will host an eye care clinic from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through May 31 at Graceway Baptist Church, 1100 SW 104. Glasses and contacts will be available at no charge to victims of the tornado. Victims should bring their badges that show they're tornado victims. Volunteers are organizing a variety of eye-related services for the event.
--The Dean McGee Eye Institute will offer an eye triage clinic to emergency responders and those affected by the tornado at the Moore Community Center, 301 S Howard Ave. Dr. Dana Garber will examine eyes and offer care for those who have sustained minor eye injuries or whose eye glasses were lost or damaged in the storm and cleanup. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday. For more information, call 271-6005.
--Economy Hearing Aid Centers and Starkey Hearing Foundation are offering free assistance to those who may have suffered hearing loss or lost their hearing aids during the storms. Individuals affected by the tornadoes should contact the Starkey Hearing Foundation. The Foundation will provide hearing aids for storm victims. Economy Hearing will make sure they are serviced and cared for, free of charge. For assistance, contact the Starkey Hearing Foundation at (866) 354-3254 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
--Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City is offering aid for immediate and long-term needs during the recovery process. Catholic Charities will provide critical, immediate needs that include: emergency assistance funds for food, shelter, clothing and other necessities; financial assistance vouchers; networking with other agencies serving those affected; and counseling services. For information, go online to www.catholiccharitiesok.org or call 523-3000.
--To apply for disaster assistance, individuals and business owners may call (800) 621-FEMA (3362) or go online to www.disasterassistance.gov.
--Oklahoma Baptists have teams of people ready to help clean people's home sites for free. If you require assistance with home site cleanup, chainsaw crews or debris cleanups, call 443-7583, 388-6912 or 415-5261 or go to the command center at First Baptist Church Moore, 301 NE 27 in Moore. For general information, updates, photos and a donation link, visit www.okdisasterhelp.com.
--The Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Norman is working with the Oklahomans affected by the recent tornadoes. The society does long-term case management, intake and referral of resources for those who had loss and damage due to the storms. St. Vincent de Paul is a founding member of the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters. For assistance, go online to http://www.svdpusa.org.
--IBC Bank has established a telephone hotline as a resource for customers who were affected by the tornado. A team of executives and senior bankers will take customer inquiries at 841-8919and will address each caller's situation on a case-by-case basis.
--The Oklahoma City Community Foundation has established a tornado recovery fund to provide assistance for intermediate and long-term recovery efforts. Find out more at https://www.occf.org/tornadorecoveryfund.
Mental health services
The Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services has established an emergency response center within the tornado disaster zone in Moore. This center will be in the Cleveland County Health Department at 424 S Eastern Avenue in Moore, and will provide walk-in services in addition to coordinating mobile crisis response teams to be deployed throughout the impacted area.
Sunbeam Family Services will host two, free community workshops on how to talk to children about natural disasters, specifically the tornadoes that have affected our community. From noon to 1 p.m. and 6 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sunbeam will offer "Understanding the Impact of Natural Disasters on Children" in the Training Room at Oklahoma City Educare, 500 SE Grand Blvd. Parents, teachers, and other community members are invited to participate in the workshop, which will explore how children perceive disasters, common reactions in children to disasters, what happens in our brains after a disaster, simple strategies to calm your child's fears after a natural disaster and how to discuss this disaster or any trauma with kids. Space for this free workshop is limited, so go online to http://sunbeamfamilyservices.org/register-for-workshop or call 528-7721to reserve your seat.
Housing or shelter
--The University of Oklahoma Housing and Food is providing housing and food for displaced families. To get help, call 325-2511 or come to Walker Tower 126 on campus.
--The Oklahoma Association of Realtors has created a Facebook group to help those displaced by recent tornadoes find temporary and long-term housing solutions. For more information, call 848-9944. People can also post their needs at www.facebook.com/groups/okhomeaid. Realtors regularly monitor this page and are ready to help. People interested in donating water, sports drinks, diapers, wipes, baby formula, hand towels, individually wrapped snacks, work gloves, hand sanitizer or sunscreen can drop them off at 9807 N Broadway Extension, 1212 S Air Depot or 3131 Northwest Expressway.
--Titan Factory Direct has committed to making sure tornado victims receive top priority in receiving homes from Champion Homes factories in Texas. Applications for relief and immediate housing solutions can be made at Titan's model center at 8308 Shields Blvd. or by phone at 635-6314.
Fuel for rescue workers
Sun Coast Resources Inc. is providing fuel for first responders and rescue and recovery vehicles, as well as generators for police, firefighters and other emergency personnel. If you are without power and fuel, call the emergency line at (800) 677-FUEL (3835), Ext. 567 or email at email@example.com.
The nonprofit National Disaster Photo Rescue is helping collect lost photographs related to the Moore tornadoes and return them to their owners. For information, go online to https://www.facebook.com/LostPhotosOfMooreOK or www.NationalDisasterPhotoRescue.net.
The Oklahoma Department of Health is issuing a temporary waiver of the fees for birth and death certificates for victims of the May 19 and 20 tornadoes. The waiver will remain in effect until June 30 for people whose homes were located in the path of tornadoes in McClain, Cleveland and Oklahoma counties, and the cities of Carney and Shawnee. Storm victims can apply for birth or death certificates at the Oklahoma Department of Health office at 1000 NE 10 at no charge. Bring photo identification or other documents that demonstrate your home address. In addition, the OSDH is setting up a temporary vital records station at the Moore branch of the Cleveland County Health Department at 424 S Eastern in Moore. Through early next week, including Memorial Day storm victims can stop by the Moore Health Department from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and apply for a birth or death certificate.
The Pep Boys will offer free automotive services to those in the tornado-affected areas. No applications, coupons or codes are needed; the free services will be applied automatically at checkout. The services will be offered at stores local to affected areas. To find a Pep Boys store in Oklahoma and North Texas, go online to pepboys.com.
With the help of a $10,000 donation from the American Kennel Club Companion Animal Recovery to the Oklahoma State University Animal Relief Fund, the OSU Center for Veterinary Health Sciences is offering free veterinary medical care to animals injured during the tornadoes. Owners and referring veterinarians can make arrangements for veterinary care at the OSU Center for Veterinary Health Sciences by calling (405) 744-7000. To donate to the OSU Animal Relief Fund, go to: http://www.cvhs.okstate.edu/index.php option=com_content&view=article&id=853&Itemid=124. To donate to the Canine Support and Relief Fund, visit www.okcdogs.org.
Send your "how to get help" items to Lillie-Beth Brinkman, lbrinkman@opubco. com
CONTRIBUTING: LILLIE-BETH BRINKMAN, RICK ROGERS
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