IMPACT

Hurricane Sandy Thanksgiving Facebook Page Connects Needy Residents With Dinner Hosts

11/21/2012 03:23 pm ET
Facebook

A Facebook page created in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy wants to ensure every resident will get to enjoy a Thanksgiving meal.

An anonymous admin organizes the effort on Hurricane Sandy- Thanksgiving Adopt A Family For Dinner, a page created on November 5 with an inaugural post inviting families to connect.

"With the televised visions of the heartbreaking losses from Hurricane Sandy, that have affected so many in NJ and NY, I have decided that I would like to help by matching people in need with families willing to invite them into their homes for a home-made (or store bought ) Thanksgiving Dinner," said the post. "Let's offer these families something that they can be truly thankful for during this season of giving."

Anyone living in New York or New Jersey can send the page a message, and they'll hear back with information about their match. Or they could post directly.

"Feel free to leave your invitations on this page for families in need," another post read. Additional posts pointed users in the direction of local organizations, such as churches, where free Thanksgiving dinners for affected families would be provided.

Over the course of a couple weeks, more and more visitors came to the page, sending the number of 'Likes' from zero to several hundred. The moderator, while trying to loop in mainstream aid organizations, noticed what anyone still struggling in the storm's wake could tell you -- that calls for help seemed to exceed the amount of relief available.

"Red Cross is overwhelmed and no one seems to be answering phones over the weekend," a post dated November 19 read.

But other successful Facebook pages, like one in New Jersey that some residents used as an alternative to 911 call centers, illustrate social media's potential in the wake of disaster.

The admin of the Thanksgiving dinner page, therefore, had reasons to remain optimistic.

"Please know that I am taking every effort to make sure these are families who lost their homes in this devastating storm. God bless and looking forward to hearing from all of you."

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Hurricane Sandy Random Acts of Kindness
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