As the American Red Cross helps tornado victims in nine Kansas counties, it is asking for monetary help to finance its relief efforts.
Donations are being accepted at the local chapter office, said Jo Byers, chapter manager. Credit card donations can be made by calling 1-800-842-2200. The local chapter office is located in the Community Building, 115 W. 11th.
"The best thing people can do is make a cash contribution," Byers said. Cash contributions are preferred over donations of goods primarily to avoid storage and shipping problems, she said.
Although most of the relief effort is focused on the hardest-hit counties around Wichita, services also are being offered in the Topeka area.
The Red Cross effort is aimed at meeting emergency needs and giving assistance with housing, clothing, food, replacement prescriptions, eyeglasses and other medical and daily living needs.
By Tuesday, more than 6,000 meals had been served from 12 mobile feeding vans serving tornado victims and cleanup volunteers. One of the vans is in the Topeka area.
Included in the relief effort are Atchison, Butler, Cowley, Elk, Jefferson, Pottawatomie, Sedgwick, Shawnee and Wabaunsee counties.
According to figures from the Red Cross, at least 278 people were injured and 75 hospitalized as a result of last week's violent weather. Damage assessment teams have found that 1,529 homes were affected in the nine-county area and that 52 percent of those were destroyed.
Byers said about 20 donations had been received at the local office by this morning.