There have been several donation drives for victims of Hurricane Ida, and this one is growing exponentially!

What started as someone asking a few friends for donations to make some ham sandwiches to have delivered to the linemen has turned into hundreds of people donating hundreds of items and thousands of dollars!

Andree Barra, the founder of Louisiana Jeepers, put out a plea to her Facebook friends to see if anyone would be willing to donate some sandwich fixings, as she was organizing a trip to the area affected by Ida. People started to share her post, and now they are working on filling a warehouse. A WAREHOUSE!

In a Facebook post, Andree explains how it went from sandwich makings to a full-blown supply drive for the linemen who are working feverishly to restore power to those affected by Hurricane Ida.

This drive started out as a sandwich run. The original plan was to have 3 people running ham and bread to lineman.
All of a sudden, we ended up with $2,000 in donations! We decided we could help with more than just sandwiches. - Andree Barra

Photo by Karo Kujanpaa on Unsplash
Photo by Karo Kujanpaa on Unsplash

She was scrolling through Facebook, reading the posts and comments from the parents and spouses of the linemen who were sent to Louisiana to work the storm damage. This is what Andree posted:

With keeping up with posts and talking to worried mommas, this is where we are.
The guys got rushed here. It was last minute and didn’t know what situation they would be in.
There isn’t a place to wash clothes just yet.
It’s hot and we all know this well. - Andree Barra, Facebook

People began to share the post like wildfire, and donations began to come in. And they are still coming in, but more are needed.

We are accepting non perishable food items, cleaning supplies, baby food, baby diapers, wipes, diaper rash ointment, gold bond powder, bug spray, sunscreen, peanut butter and jelly and granola bars. - Andree Barra

Photo by Freddy G on Unsplash
Photo by Freddy G on Unsplash

To help the linemen who still have no place to wash clothes or find (steady) meals and to help the residents of Louisiana affected by Ida, the drive is asking for a laundry list of items (no pun intended):

  • T-shirts
  • Non-perishable food items for family meals
  • Socks
  • Underwear
  • Sunblock
  • Bug Spray (Off)
  • Body powder
  • Diaper rash ointment
  • Chafing ointment
  • Baby wipes
  • Deodorant
  • Granola bars
  • Snacks that will last in the heat (beef jerky is a good idea!)
  • Potassium tablets (to prevent muscle lockups from heat)
  • Magnesium tablets (to prevent muscle lockups from heat)
  • Electrolyte drinks or powders
  • Cases of water
  • People willing to help deliver these items to the affected areas.
Photo by Paulette Wooten on Unsplash
Photo by Paulette Wooten on Unsplash

When looking for a place in Lafayette large enough to collect the donated items, one business stepped up to the plate.

Ashley is donating the money needed to feed the people of Chauvin, and the warehouse space for us to make this happen.
K&R Operating donated their huge grill.
Local bottling company donated 210 cases of Canned water. - Andree Barra

Ashley Homestore on Ambassador Caffery (behind Hooters) responded with an "anything you need", and that is where you drop off your donations.

**NOTE** The time for donations has been extended from 10 AM to 7 PM today, Thursday, and Friday.

Hurricane Ida Supply Drive via Facebook
Hurricane Ida Supply Drive via Facebook

**NOTE** The time for donations has been extended from 10 AM to 7 PM today, Thursday, and Friday.

Jeepers from all over Louisiana will be converging this week to carry items to the linemen and Hurricane Ida victims who need the supplies in the Bayou Parishes.

Please, if you can, consider donating to this cause and, if you have the means, volunteering your time to help collect/sort/load items and/or drive to the affected areas to deliver.

Image courtesy of Louisiana Jeepers
Image courtesy of Louisiana Jeepers

Why Jeepers?

If you have spent any time in Acadiana over the past dozen or so years, you have certainly seen concentrations of Jeeps out and about for events. Similar to the Cajun Harley Owner's Group and the Classic Car Groups, the Jeepers have a special bond, as described by Andree in this post:

Since the coronavirus has hit, many events that the Jeepers usually support have been postponed or canceled altogether. From the small "Topless Tuesdays" events to the huge 'jeep jaunt' event, cancellation after cancellation has left the Jeepers feeling like they aren't helping their community enough. But, they can't do it without your help.

All Jacked Up Jeepers via Facebook
All Jacked Up Jeepers via Facebook

They are donating items and money, but they are also donating their time to collect YOUR donations and bring those donations to the people who need them most.

Please consider picking up a few items to bring to the Ashley warehouse on Ambassador Caffery and, again, if you are able, consider volunteering to ferry items to the affected areas.

Acadiana, now is the time for you to do what you do best.

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