We just got back from a donation center set up in WalMart's parking lot SW of here . We had a really nice car seat that DGS had just recently outgrown, among other stuff. They were so excited about the car seat, that we've come home to hunt down any other grand parents around us that also have 'em sitting in the garage. Well intentioned donations of drapes, furniture and clothing are nice, but if you don't have a home or a place to store clothes under your cot at the local church, gift cards work better.
I believe people think that the folks who lost their homes still have their cars and trucks. They mostly have nothing. When the deputies knocked on their doors, the fire was already at the back door for most of them. Cars, animals,everything had to be left behind. The sad part is knowing your animals need water more than food and you aren't allowed to go back even to give them water. One dog on TV last night was found sitting in front of his owners' burned out home covered in ashes....waiting. His paws and legs are burned, and no one has claimed him yet.