First Response

While forming READ, the big question was always when we will be ready to respond to a natural disaster. The answer is unknown of when READ will be able to respond with the scale of response we wish to have. There is still money to be raised so that READ may purchase the necessary supplies. Additionally coordination of manpower and the logistics of the response are still being mapped out.

In December 2020, READ participated in Giving Tuesday to raise seed money to get the ball rolling. With the money raised, backpacks and school supplies for elementary aged students were purchased, and backpacks assembled for when they would be needed. As tornado season was starting up, 100 backpacks were shipped to READ intern Gavin Floyd, a student at the University of Alabama, in case tornado damage occurred near him. On March 25, tornados touched down in Alabama outside of Birmingham damaging homes and Oak Mountain Elementary School. On March 27, Gavin drove to the affected community and delivered backpacks to the Asbury United Methodist Church for distribution to students. On April 8, Gavin delivered backpacks to Oak Mountain Elementary School, which had just reopened earlier that week, for distribution.

While READ's response was not of grand proportion, it was the beginning of great things to come.