Inside Look at Donations Warehouse for Tornado Victims

Published 05/09 2014 08:52AM

Updated 05/09 2014 08:54AM

FAULKNER COUNTY, Ark. -- Officials coordinating the response after the tornado in Faulkner County say they need volunteers to help sort through unsolicited donations.

Any donations coming in for victims not in the form of cash, are being sent to an undisclosed location in central Arkansas to be sorted and prepared for redistribution to storm victims.

Lavida Whitson with Arkansas Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, says the scale of the response for donated items is comparable to what she saw after the Arkadelphia tornado in 1997.

Like then, tornado recovery now takes a large coordinated effort to handle the volume of donations various churches, schools and drop-off locations are receiving.

"We have a lot of space here and we expect we will fill it up," Whitson says.

A corporation donated the 282,000 square foot space to Faulkner County allowing for collection, sorting and distribution to those in need.

"This is very typical of our Arkansas people," Whitson says.  "It's just amazing at times, you can get emotional about it."

Whitson says several locations collecting donations may becoming overrun from the outpouring of generosity.

"Those organizations need to know they can call us to bring the items here where we can store and sort them."

Whitson says the phone number 501-366-3936 will be manned during regular business hours Monday - Friday.

Also, more information on the donation collection process is available at Faulkner County Arkansas Tornado Relief.

(KARK, Little Rock)

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