As I drove back from my home in central New Jersey to Lehigh after Thanksgiving break, I spotted some Red Cross relief trucks from Florida. I had no doubt why they were there, they were helping to provide relief that was still extremely necessary a month after Hurricane Sandy.
Even though everything seemed to be back to normal in my life at Lehigh, being back home reminded me how much still needed to be done. Our Thanksgiving conversation was dominated by the very sad stories everyone had to pass around about their friends who had suffered unimaginable losses. My younger sister has many friends who are still displaced into family member’s homes, my grandpa is still dealing with damage from a large tree that fell on his house and my own family just considered themselves lucky to have had no physical damage from the storm, and happy that they just dealt with a power outage, even if it was for two weeks.
While the damage is so far reaching, it is also so close to home. When I came home after the power outage at Lehigh, I was appalled by what I saw in my hometown and the surrounding areas: there were downed trees everywhere, no power anywhere and even government tanks being rolled in to help. It was without doubt in much better condition a month later around Thanksgiving, but those who were hit the hardest still needed more help. And they still do.
I do not know one person at Lehigh who was unaffected by the storm. Or anyone at all for that matter. That, to me, is what makes helping so important. We all felt some effects, which makes the drive to help even more powerful.
As the holidays approach, I can’t help but think of the people whose lives have been changed forever. Our class may have reached our goal, but the real goal is to help as many people as we can. Please donate to our campaign.
#COMM30Sandy is an online class project for the Media & Society class at Lehigh University, taught by professor Jeremy Littau. You can donate to our campaign at this link, and for more infomation you can email Prof. Littau at jeremy.littau(at)lehigh.edu.