With the wind-spread wildfire in the Gatlinburg/Sevier County area, thousands of people have already been displaced. Looking for a way to help, many individuals and organizations have stepped in to plan fundraisers and donation drives.
As of Tuesday morning, the Pigeon Forge Fire Department is fine on food for today but could use fruit, granola and energy bars.
Food/Water for the shelters in Pigeon Forge is being coordinated by the Sevier County Economic Development Office 865-428-2212.
LeConte Center’s shelter is in need of stuffed animals, and games, coloring books; diapers, baby cloths and children cloths; Underwear – men and women any size; Medical – Aspirin, Tylenol, Tums, etc.; Deodorant, Feminine Products, lotions; Blankets & towels and Plastic bags. For questions or more information, please contact Joy McNealy of the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism (865-453-8574 or firstname.lastname@example.org).
Paws & Claws Animal Rescue TN in Jefferson City will be collecting bottled water and other drinks as well as packaged snacks for firefighters. Items can be dropped off at the Fox Feed Supply located at 250 W. Old AJ Hwy, Jefferson City, TN 37760. For more information call or text Wendy at 423-312-7400.
The Blount Co. Chamber of Commerce and the Townsend Visitors Center are also collecting bottled water/Gatorade, canned/packaged food, pet food, blankets, diapers, jackets, and gloves and scarves for displaced families and first responders. Items can be dropped off at the Chamber from 8:00 am – 5:00 pm, located at 201 S. Washington Street in Maryville, or the Visitors Center at 7906 E. Lamar Alexander Pkwy. in Townsend. For more information, call 865-983-2241.
Also, over the years, the TN Hospitality & Tourism Association has created a program called “Together We Prepare” with the American Red Cross and other emergency related entities. The program urges that all TnHTA members and other hoteliers in the state provide rooms to evacuees for a reasonable rate and potentially even at the government rate or lower. The TnHTA is also working on setting up a fundraiser for members to donate to our friends in the Sevier County area. More information on donations is coming soon.
The Red Cross is also asking for cash donations for the time being. You can make a $10 donation by texting “REDCROSS” to 90999.
If you have any other information on how to help, please email email@example.com.
Our thoughts are with the people of the Great Smoky Mountains/Gatlinburg area.