By Oralia Ortega

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – As Houston residents continue to deal with the devastation left behind following the arrival of Hurricane Harvey, South Florida is stepping up to help.

The Red Cross in South Florida is sending three of its trucks Tuesday morning to help out those residents who have been displaced by the storm.  Each truck can provide up to 9,000 meals per day and is also carrying hygiene kits for those affected.

In order for organizations like the Red Cross to be able to provide this type of assistance, they need your help.

“As we’re providing help every day, more help is required, both human and material so we need volunteers so I encourage the community to register today and train to be a disaster responder, if not this disaster, it’ll be the next,” said Red Cross public information officer Roberto Baltonado.

Something else badly needed – monetary donations.

“The best way to help in a disaster is by providing a financial donation.  Organizations like ours, we already have an inventory of things we can provide on the spot and so those donations allow us to replenish, to continue providing them as it is the case in this disaster or basically be ready for the next one,” said Baltonado.

Harvey Flooding Disaster: How You Can Help

Search and rescue and swift water response teams that left Miami Sunday have nearly reached southeast Texas. Dozens of Coast Guard personnel from Florida are also on their way. And more than 100 officers from Florida’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission hauling dozens of boats will be helping tens of thousands of people displaced because of Hurricane Harvey.

Here at home local agencies taking donations include The United Way, The Greater Miami Jewish Federation and the Archdiocese of Miami.

“No water, no canned goods, not clothing because it’s impossible to ship those items there.  What we do with your financial donations, we are able to purchase in bulk somewhere closer to Texas and then be able to ship those items,” said Archdiocese of Miami communications director Mary Ross Agosta.

Neighbors4Neighbors has partnered up with “Rebuilding Together,” a national organization that rebuilds homes for the elderly and disabled, to help out.

“The best thing people can do now is to send money.  We can’t really send goods and supplies. It’s a disaster there.  It’s flooded but money gets people exactly what they need.  It will help them get the supplies to rebuild for these people who desperately need it,” said Neighbors 4 Neighbors Executive Director Lynn Cameron.

Besides volunteers and monetary donations, one organization is asking for blood donations. OneBlood, a nonprofit organization, says they will continue sending blood to Texas until further notice.

On Wednesday, Feeding South Florida needs volunteers to help them sort through cleaning supplies they plan to ship to Texas. The organization says it needs 100 volunteers between 6:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. at their main warehouse in Pembroke Park.


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