Hurricane Sandy made landfall in southern New Jersey October 29th as a deadly superstorm bringing 90-mph winds and a roiling wall of seawater as it moved inland, causing widespread flooding in the New York metropolitan area. It was 900 miles wide as it approached, with hurricane-force winds extending 175 miles from the epicenter and tropical-force winds extending 520 miles, potentially making it one of the biggest storms to ever hit the East Coast. The hurricane collided with a winter storm and a cold front, making it a hybrid that brought devastating floods and damaging winds to some areas and up to three feet of snow in others. The impact of this storm has left many people without homes, food, water, even the basic necessities that we all take for granted. Let’s all do what we can to help them recover and rebuild!

Apple has added a button to the homepage of its iTunes Store that clicks through to a page where you can use your iTunes account to donate money to “Help Superstorm Sandy survivors.” ALL proceeds paid from the page in your iTunes account will go to help the survivors of hurricane Sandy. The donation page is accessible on both the iOS and desktop versions of the iTunes Store, giving users the opportunity to donate $5, $10, $25, $50, $100, and $200 – all you need to do is click the Donate button under each amount and iTunes will transfer 100% of your donation to the American Red Cross. That’s right – 100%. There will be no 30% cut taken by Apple.

To help victims of Sandy, you can also make donations by visiting the American Red Cross or you can text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. You can also contact FEMA for donation and volunteer information. Samaritan’s Purse has set up a fourth Disaster Relief center in New York and is also taking donations to help the people whose lives have been devastated by this storm. The Salvation Army asks people who want to help those affected by this disaster to visit www.salvationarmyusa.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769). Donors may also contribute $10 via their phone bill by text messaging the word STORM to 80888, and confirming the donation with the word, “Yes.” Donations to the United Way Hurricane Sandy Recovery Fund can be made online at uwsandyrecovery.org. A $10 donation can be made by texting the word RECOVERY to 52000. For more information, contact United Way of the River Cities at 304-523-8929.

The AARP has Established a Relief Fund for Victims of Superstorm Sandy. AARP and its members are committed to helping those in need, so to bolster the Foundation’s relief effort AARP and its affiliates will match contributions dollar-for-dollar up to $500,000, assuring up to $1 million in aid.  The matching program will be administered through the AARP Foundation. To donate to the AARP Foundation Disaster Relief Fund, please go to: www.aarp.org/disasterrelief.

Food services are just as important as rebuilding homes and businesses. If you would like to donate food instead of money, there is a Sandy Relief Fund food drive being conducted on Feeding America and Food Bank NYC, ORG. KROGER IS TAKING DONATIONS: Kroger stores in the Mid-Atlantic region will be collecting donations for hurricane victims to give to the American Red Cross. Coin boxes will also be placed at checkout lanes in stores through Nov. 17.

Volunteer services:

If you believe that you have been a victim of fraud by a person or organization soliciting relief funds on behalf of hurricane victims, or if you discover fraudulent disaster relief claims submitted by a person or organization, contact the NCDF by phone at 866-720-5721, fax at 225-334-4707 or email at disaster@leo.gov.