News Local/State

Red Cross, United Way Reaching Out To Storm-Ravaged Gifford


The American Red Cross and United Way of Champaign County have coordinated disaster recovery efforts in Gifford in the wake of the storm.

United Way President Sue Grey says basic needs, food, water, and cash donations, are the most urgent needs right now. 

Her agency is also working with local food vendors to help out the more than 400 people needing meals Monday night.

Grey said supplies will be delivered to the Gordyville Auction House on Route 136 outside the village.

“They’re processing volunteers at Gordyville," she said.  "And it’s a kind of a staging area for them to keep people – you know, you can get close to Gifford, but they don’t need a lot of additional bodies in Gifford.  That’s kind of where they’re at.”

The United Way is coordinating a bottled water drive than runs from 2 to 6 p.m. Monday at WDWS Radio at 2301 S. Neil Street in Champaign.  Water, as well as cash donations, are also being accepted all week at the United Way of Champaign County Office on West Church Street from 8:30 to 5 p.m.

On Wednesday, the United Way will accept cash and check donations at WCIA Channel 3 at 509 S. Neil St in Champaign, from 6 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Potential volunteers can call United Way at 352-5151, and the agency will keep a liist for the American Red Cross.  In a press release, the United Way noted that because of the nature of the situation, not all volunteers may be called immediately to assist.

Volunteer efforts include staff with Champaign's Public Works Department.  Eight staff members have been deployed, and will be under the direction of on-site command staff from the Champaign County Emergency Management Agency.