11 Ways You Can Help People Affected by Winter Storm Uri in Texas

While the storm has passed, people in Texas still need food, water and shelter.

Last week’s snowstorm took a heavy toll on Texas. The power outages and freezing temperatures sent families rushing to shelters seeking heat and light, boil water notices in many areas and a shortage of food. While the temperature is creeping up and electricity has returned to most homes, people around the state are still struggling to access food, water and shelter, with pipes burst from the cold and food spoiled by power outages.

Several groups are taking donations to help those affected by the storm, so if you’re looking to help our neighbors in the Lone Star State, we’ve got a list of national and local organizations that are engaged in relief efforts. If you live in Texas or nearby, and are able to spare some time, this is what your food bank needs the most.

Austin Mutual Aid

The organization is taking donations to provide water, food and shelter to any residents in need in the Austin area. You can donate here and get updates on their work on Facebook.

The Austin Area Urban League

This organization is the creator of the #LoveThyNeighborTX campaign. You can donate here to provide residents with shelter, food, water, clothing and any other emergency supplies they might need.

Caritas of Austin

Known for its work towards ending homelessness, the organization is currently aiming to provide people in the Austin area with shelter, food, supplies and other items. You can make a donation or check out the charity’s wish list.

Feed the People Dallas

The POC-led mutual aid fund helps to provide food to anyone who needs it in the Dallas area. You can make a donation via PayPal, Cashapp and Venmo or buy something directly from their Amazon wishlist. You can follow updates on their work on Instagram.

Free Lunch

This small business functions as a meal support program, primarily aimed towards the homeless in Austin. You can donate and get a quarterly zine in return. The organization is also providing items like hand sanitizers and blankets during this time.

Funky Town Fridge

These community fridges provide a regular supply of food to anyone who needs it at no cost. You can make a monetary donation, or bring your own items to the fridge if you’re near any of their three fridges in the Fort Worth Area. Be sure to check out their food donation guidelines first!

Lucille’s 1913

An initiative by Houston-based restaurant Lucille’s, this community collective provides healthy meals to underserved communities in the area. You can donate here.

The American Red Cross

The national organization is providing warming centers across the state with blankets, volunteers, water and ready-to-eat meals. They’re also encouraging people to donate blood if they’re able for emergencies. You can make a donation or look for a blood drive near you.

Feeding America

Texas has 18 food banks associated with Feeding America. You can visit the individual website of any food bank to donate directly or make a donation to Feeding America to help fight food insecurity.

World Central Kitchen

Led by Chef José Andrés, the organization feeds people in need around the world, and is already on the ground helping people in Texas. You can donate and get information about their work in Texas.

Mercy Chefs

The faith-based disaster relief non-profit is already serving meals to those who need them on the ground in Houston. You can donate to them or sign up to volunteer here.

No matter where you live, your local food bank could probably use a boost. And while the vaccine rollout is picking up speed, we’re still in the middle of a pandemic, so don’t forget to keep an eye on your community!

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Amrita Thakkar
Amrita is a writer, poet and amateur photographer who often ends up applying these skills to her one great love: food. You can find her up at 3 a.m. writing, researching the perfect combo for her next grilled cheese or making a more eco-friendly grocery list.