February 19, 2021
Two back-to-back major winter storm systems continue to wreak havoc across much of the United States. The first system covered over 73% of the lower 48 states in snow with an average depth of 6 inches as of Tuesday – the most snow since records began about two decades ago. The second system is currently underway, leaving no time for people to recover from the first system. As of Thursday, millions were without power in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, West Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio and Oregon. Texas has experienced significant impact, where people are without power and/or safe water and nearly 25% of the state's population are under boil water orders.
More than 260 trained Red Cross disaster workers have mobilized from Texas to Tennessee to support relief efforts on the ground or virtually. On Wednesday night, nearly 3,200 people sought refuge in about 180 Red Cross and community shelters, as well as emergency hotel lodging, across ten states. The Red Cross is helping to support warming centers by providing cots, blankets, volunteers, water and ready-to-eat meals when requested.
The Caterpillar Foundation is a member of the American Red Cross Annual Disaster Giving Program (ADGP). Our $2 million annual investment helps provide a funding base that allows the Red Cross to respond immediately to the needs of individuals and families impacted by the winter storms, enabling the organization to preposition supplies for those in need. This model has proven to be efficient and effective in immediately meeting disaster relief needs, ensuring the Red Cross has the funds to prepare for disasters before they occur.
American Red Cross volunteer Chance Vogel checks on Deondre, age 6, and Jayden, age 5, with their grandmother Joyce who are all staying at a Red Cross shelter, in Houston, TX, on Tuesday February 16, 2021. A winter storm has left millions of Texas residents without electricity. Photo by Scott Dalton/American Red Cross
In addition to the Foundation’s investment in the ADGP, U.S. employees and retirees can utilize the Caterpillar Foundation’s U.S. Matching Gifts Program to get your donations to eligible organizations matched. Check out the program guidelines and FAQs to ensure your organization of choice is eligible for the match.
If you’re looking for an organization to support, consider one of the local food banks given there is significant need for water and food at this time. Here’s a list of Feeding America food banks located in Caterpillar communities throughout Texas:
To learn more about the global impact of the Caterpillar Foundation, click here.