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From the Edge: Editorial

 by Megan Irwin  published on Thursday, September 8, 2005

Megan Irwin<br>SPM/issues/arts/693740
Megan Irwin
SPM
 

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I fell asleep Sunday night, my laptop still in my hands, crying. I'd spent the hours prior to passing out, pouring over stories and images of Hurricane Katrina's aftermath. My sadness grew with every photo of an orphaned child, every image of people trapped in their houses, too poor to have evacuated the city while there was still time.

That sounds so overwrought. I know. But there's something you ought to know about me: I'm not a crier. In the past seven months, I have been moved to tears exactly once. Feelings of sadness yes, but tears? No. Until Katrina.

This particular tragedy has gotten under my skin in a way I no longer thought anything could. And with the sadness comes a deep feeling of frustration. At times like this I almost wish I'd gone to medical school and learned a more useful skill. People are dying, lives are destroyed, and what can I do? Write about it?

Well yeah. That's exactly what I can do. Even though we're not trained professionals, there is still plenty we can do to help victims of the hurricane. At the time of this writing, Arizona is home to over 500 evacuees, with more on the way, and there's a lot of work to do. Below you'll find a just a few of the organizations working on hurricane relief efforts and ways that you can get involved:

The Salvation Army has a center open at 2707 E. Van Buren St. in Phoenix and is ready to accept in-kind donations including bottled water, new clothing and shoes, diapers and sanitary products.

The Arizona Human Rights Fund and Foundation is organizing an effort to house evacuees in welcoming homes, specifically homes that are welcoming to the LGBT community. For information contact amyk@ahrf.org.

Sept. 14 is ASU's own Hurricane Relief Day. Student organizations are "adopting" buildings around campus and setting up tables from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. to collect donations. State Press and the rest of Student Media will be set up outside the south side of Matthews Center (by Hayden Lawn), so come by to donate a few dollars and see what your favorite magazine editor is like in person. For information on how you and your organization can get involved contact Thomas Turner at katrina.relief@asu.edu.

The Maricopa Citizen Corps is urging people to "get trained, get educated, get prepared." Right now the hurricane is on all of our minds, but the recovery effort is going to be huge over a long period of time. Current volunteers will eventually wear themselves out and will have to be replaced. Contact www.maricopacitizencorps.org to find out how you can receive volunteer training.

Reach the reporter at megan.irwin@asu.edu.



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