What Should We Do?

I was devastated to find out about the Bronx fire this morning, in which many members of a hard-working West African family were killed. Most of the victims were children.

Like many people, incidents like these remind me to stop and feel thankful for my blessings. Then, life continues. Somehow, many people (present company included) assume that the victims are being cared for, provided with food. clothing and shelter. That somehow, life will continue for them as well. Yet we all know it's not really that simple.

What can those of us who have (thankfully) never been in this type of tragedy do for this family? Does it begin with a clothing drive? A fundraiser? Obviously, they will need assistance to get their lives back together, any little bit we can do could help.

But where do we begin?


Maia said...

There may be a neighborhood fund drive already set up that could be contributed to. Perhaps contacting a journalist who wrote about the tragedy would be helpful in tracking down fund raising efforts that are already in place (if there are any). On a more local level, when a family in Rosendale recently lost their home to fire (they didn't have home owner's insurance)their neighbors and community put out jam jars at every local business for donations and then put on a night of music at the community center to raise funds for them. Maybe something similar could be put together at Bard?

Christopher Chambers said...

A lot has been made of the family being from Mali and "not understanding" fire safety, etc. Was there some racist angle to this in the media? I saw the Mayor of NY on TV but he looked to be very supportive.

Mrs. J said...

Maia- Great idea, thanks. I think I'm going to do a clothing drive at J-Jo's nursery school an see if we can't collect some clothes and other needed items for the surviving children.

CC- It did seem like there was that overtone, with headlines like "Woman Throws Children from Windows." Just heartbreaking.
People actually caught those children (or most of them I hope). There was no mention of that until 1/3 through the story.

We live in a country where kids are taught to "stop, drop and roll" from first grade on. Meanwhile, six year olds in third world countires are losing relatives to disease, civil wars...losing their innocence everyday. It's embarrassing how naive Americans can be.

I'm glad to hear Bloomberg seemed sympathetic.

Kim said...

I didn't know about this tragic story.

We hear about loss such as this all the time, until, yes, we become...nearly inoculated against the instinct to recoil, to wretch, to instantly reach out and assist.

Your heart, your Mommy heart, is clearly a beacon, Mrs. J.