St. Mary's collects donations for Oklahoma tornado victims - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

St. Mary's collects donations for Oklahoma tornado victims

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PHOENIX -

A storm of this magnitude is capable of lifting reinforced buildings off the ground and throwing cars like missiles. The cleanup from this storm is going to take years, but some people in the valley are doing their part to help out.

The call for help came last night from Oklahoma's Regional Food Bank. Their message to St. Mary's in Phoenix: "we are in trouble, we need your help."

The answer from St. Mary's Food Bank, one of the largest in the country, was "what do you need?"

St. Mary's Food Bank sprang into action before dawn to get the essentials packed up and ready to be trucked to devastated areas of Oklahoma.

"There's no power, there's no cooking food, the survivors the folks who have lost everything, they need that immediate food. it's the first things that they need before they worry about all the other problems that come up later. they have to get food in their stomachs, they have to get water," says Jerry Brown, St. Mary's Food Bank.

Ready-to-eat items are also on the list that Oklahoma Food Banks asked St. Mary's to send. Crackers, canned goods, anything that can be eaten immediately with no prep.

St. Mary's added a surprise -- comfort food in the form of Girl Scout Cookies that hopefully will lift some spirits.

"It's just a special treat for those who are going through a really hard time right now," says Erica Sigl.

As the food bank sends out four truckloads of food and water to the disaster area, organizers know it depletes what they have for the valley community.

"This is a tough time of year for us as summer comes up, kids are out of school, they're not getting their subsidized breakfast and lunch programs so their parents are having to find extra ways to feed their children so they tend to lean on us."

But when your neighborhood, your street, looks like this, St. Mary's says they don't think twice about reaching out to help, even if that reach is a 1,000 miles away.

"It's not just that they're far away from us, we think of them as our own. This whole country, we work together."

St. Mary's is encouraging people in this community to donate and hold food drives, so that this massive effort to help those devastated in Oklahoma can continue full force, and they can replenish the shelves here in Phoenix.

Online: www.firstfoodbank.org


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