Locals join forces to collect donations for Hurricane Harvey vic - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Locals join forces to collect donations for Hurricane Harvey victims

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WSIL -- The devastation from Hurricane Harvey is prompting many southern Illinoisans to help. Individuals, churches, organizations and groups are busy dropping off items at several collection points.

Donations are pouring in to a Mt. Vernon warehouse to help Hurricane Harvey victims.

"If something this devastating happened to our community, we would want the same type of support," says resident Shauna Presley. 

The warehouse belongs to owners of Mountain Valley Water Company, who are allowing Presley to use it for free for two days to collect donations for victims.

Presley says she has family working with the American Red Cross in Texas, so she used social media to get the word out that she plans to take items to Texas.

"It just blew up. It got so much bigger than I was and I've been up, I think I've had about three hours of sleep, but it's worth it. It's worth it to do whatever you can to help everybody," says Presley.  

Presley is collecting Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m., 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., and 4:30 p.m to 6 p.m at 423 South 8th Street. She plans to leave no later than Monday. 

Farther south, Southern Illinois Worship Center is also collecting items.

"Baby diapers, adult diapers, personal hygiene products, non-perishable food items that have high nutritional value," says senior pastor Jason McKinnies. 

Pastor McKinnies says he has been in contact with a church in Texas that he says is housing 300 hurricane victims.

"When you watch the crisis unfold in East Texas you feel helpless, you feel overwhelmed and if I was feeling that way and other pastors were feeling that way, the people are feeling that way," says  McKinnies.

McKinnies says local ministries like Life Source Church in West Frankfort, Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Carbondale, Pentecostals of Southern Illinois are drop-off points for collections this week. He says all items will be delivered to his church and loaded up Friday to make their way to Texas.

You can drop off items at Southern Illinois Worship Center 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Friday until 1 p.m. A semi hauling all the donations will take off from the church at 5 p.m. Friday.

Presley and McKinnies say this is the best way for everyone to help.

"There's families and children and animals down there that just really need support," says Presley. 

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