Law enforcers and El Campo High School students are uniting in a plea this weekend – bring us your wet wipes, cleaning supplies and baby food – there’s a whole lot of folk in Louisiana who need it.
The goal is to fill at least a cattle trailer full of supplies and take it over to Homa, La., Tuesday morning, El Campo Police Lt. Justin Soza told the Leader-News.
“We’ve got a long way to go,” El Campo FFA Advisor Casey Wilson added. “We need people to step up in the most positive way.”
Hurricane Ida roared into Homa Sunday with the blow-your-roof-clean-off 150 mph winds of a category 4 storm and pulling Gulf waters ashore.
Something needed to be done, Soza said, adding the drive was created quickly because the need is immediate. “The Sheriff (Shannon Srubar) and I were sitting in class. He said, ‘Hey, let’s do something.’ This was like Tuesday,” Soza said.
Reports from the Homa area are bleak. Power won’t be restored for weeks, homes are destroyed and supplies are extremely limited for those who chose to weather the storm.
“We both knew we wanted to be a part of this,” Srubar said. “We are so proud of our community being able to assist.”
Within a single day, the El Campo and Wharton police departments, Wharton County Sheriff’s Department, Wharton County Office of Emergency Management along with the ECHS FFA and Anchor Club had joined forces with Matagorda County law enforcement.
“(Soza) reached out to me and it was a no brainer. We (FFA) love to help and this is community service,” Wilson said.
Aligning with the FFA provides the effort with about 400 sets of helping hands, making the quick turnaround possible.
In the first day, the groups rounded up water bottles, toilet paper, cleaning items, baby wipes and several packages of diapers.
“(Thursday), the Rotary (Club of El Campo) donated money and we were able to get cleaning supplies,” Soza said.
Almost anything would help, Wilson said, adding people can drop off donations any time day or night.
New items are preferred and, so far, that’s what’s showing up in the trailer.
Plates, canned goods, soap, baby formula, trash cans, brooms, tarps and water are also needed.
“We are looking at a combined effort with our local law enforcement, Matagorda County and El Campo FFA collections to have at least one 18-wheeler full of supplies, possibly two ... This is a multi-county group effort, coming together for our neighbors,” Srubar said.
Operation Stock The Trailer donations can be dropped off at the El Campo Police Department or in the cattle trailer parked behind the El Campo ISD administration building, 700 W. Norris, at any time.
In Wharton, collections are being accepted at the sheriff’s department, 315 Elm, or the Wharton Police Department, 1407 N. Richmond.