One month ago today, an EF5 tornado ripped through the the town of Moore, Okla. and completely demolished the cozy suburb of Oklahoma City and its residents. Volunteers arrived en masse from across the state and country to help. The outpouring of time and money devoted to helping Oklahoman families has been incredible and over 56,000 tons of debris have been removed from the site of the devastation.
Though many more tons of debris still remain. The photos below were all taken within the past week, just to give you an idea. Volunteers are still needed every day, and funding for these volunteer organizations is crucial. Once the cleanup is complete, it’s time to start rebuilding. With countless miles of homes ripped from their foundation by this storm with wind speeds up to 200 miles per hour, it’s going to take time and it’s going to take your help.
Wayne Coyne, frontman for The Flaming Lips and Oklahoma native, described the situation eloquently in an interview with Tulsa World, “Shakespeare said, ‘It is not enough to help the needy up, but to support them after’ and in our small way we are trying to not just be here at the moment of immediate need, but to stay and help with the rebuilding. After all, this is our home and they are us and we are them.”
Coyne along with fellow Okies Kings of Leon, has organized a relief benefit concert that will take place on July 23rd. Not only will it be an awesome show, but if you purchase a ticket proceeds will go straight to local charitable organizations.
For fans of country music, there is another large benefit concert taking place on July 6th that will feature Oklahoma natives Toby Keith, Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood, and more. Tickets go on sale tomorrow (June 21st) and all proceeds benefit the United Way of Central Oklahoma Tornado relief Fund.
If you can’t make it to a show, the simplest way to donate is to use your phone to text. Simply texting these numbers listed below will donate $10 to the organization listed.
Graphic Courtesy of Moore Oklahoma Tornado Recovery.
Additionally, if you’re in the Midwest and are looking to add a loved one to your family via a furry friend, you may want to attend this weekend’s pet adopt-a-thon for animals that have not been able to be reunited with their families since the tornado.
Finally, The United Way has some additional ways you can donate to relief efforts.
A neighborhood with homes devastated down to just the foundation.
Hospital destroyed during the tornado.
What happens when a phone book tangles with an EF5 tornado.
Family lost home and are now living in a tent on the property.
Moore homes and neighborhoods destroyed.
Disaster relief center where victims can go shopping for household items.
All photos by Emily Smith. For more, check out the BTR Flickr account.