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Thursday, March 9, 2017

Sacred Heart Update ...how you can too

Dear Patricia,

We're just getting started.

It's been 2 weeks since Coyote Creek flooded its banks, uprooting the lives of thousands of San José residents.  Last week, when the City asked Sacred Heart to help, our community banded together to begin housing stability plans and to provide emergency relief funds and other resources to families whose units have such severe damage that they cannot return to their homes until they have significant repairs.    

Friday evening, Tran came to Sacred Heart with his wife and 6-year-old son. Because of flooding, they could not get to any items from their household and were living in shelter for the first time.

They filled out all the paperwork and arrived in hopes of receiving financial aid. "My car is destroyed along with many of my tools for work," Tran told us. "Right now, I need to figure out where to live next and I'm trying to find a warm coat for my son." 

Thanks to donors from all over the County, Tran left with hope of reestablishing a home, and one of our volunteers found the perfect coat for his son. "See how happy he is? That is what we need right now. We're going back to the shelter tonight, but we have a plan for tomorrow."
Since we started activating our community to respond just a few short days ago, we have met hundreds of families like these.  So far, our volunteers and staff have reached about half of the households with the most severe damage and worked together to distribute over $600,000 in relief funds to date.

There is much more to do.

WAYS TO GET INVOLVED:

1) Volunteers:
We are still in need of skilled adult volunteers - especially those with Vietnamese and Spanish language abilities.  Volunteer opportunities include phone banking, outreach to flood victims, tracking eligibility criteria for applicants, and sorting/distributing donated resources, among other important tasks. 

When: 
Neighborhood outreach volunteers are needed on Saturday from 9am -1pm and 12:30pm - 4pm. Volunteers must provide their own transportation for neighborhood outreach.

Onsite volunteers are needed this Saturday from 9 -5, Sunday 12 - 5, and Monday - Fridayfrom 9 - 6.
 
To sign up for this weekend's shifts or learn about other opportunities, please email volunteers@sacredheadheartcs.org

2) Financial Support:
Donations support Sacred Heart's flood  relief mobilization effort and help those who were living along the creek replace what they lost. Donate to Sacred Heart online

or

Donate directly to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation's San Jose Flood Victim's Relief fund.

So many of us have been touched by the impact of this flood on our communities, our neighborhoods, and our families. This tragedy presents us with an opportunity to step up and support our brothers and sisters as they rebuild their lives.  

In solidarity,
Poncho Guevara
Executive Director
Sacred Heart Community Service
To stay up to date on news of the Coyote Creek Flood, subscribe to the City's "2017 Coyote Creek Flood Recovery" bulletin on their website.
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