I don’t know how many of you live in Boston or have loved ones who live in Boston, but hopefully those who do will find this helpful.
The Red Cross has created this Safe & Well Person Finder. Keep in mind that not everyone will be logged. Some may not be able to get to a computer, some may not know the Red Cross is offering these services. If you know a person who was at the Marathon (or close to it), please encourage them to log their names or, if they are injured and unable to, do it for them. Someone might be looking for them and the explosions have undoubtedly made communications difficult.
If you’re searching for loved ones, you can call 1-617-635-4500. If you have information for police, you can call 1-800-494-TIPS (that’s 8477, for those who don’t have letters on their key pads).
Beware of fake Twitter charities. Unfortunately, there are many people out there who hope to capitalize on disaster. Only donate to names you know–the Red Cross is the safest bet at the moment. If you wish to donate money, you can find out how by going here.
Massachusetts General Hospital is taking blood donations. They received a lot of donations yesterday, but they will need to replenish. For more information, you can visit their website and get the number to call. The Red Cross has donation eligibility requirements listed here.
If you don’t live in Massachusetts, but still wish to donate blood, find out more about the process here.
Many marathoners are without a place to stay after the explosions. The Boston Globe has a form you can fill out if you live in or near Boston and have a place for them. If you are someone without a place to stay, you can see the list here.
The Salvation Army is providing support to survivors and first responders. If you wish to support the Salvation Army Disaster Services, you can donate (be it money or goods) here.
If you are experiencing any distress (stress, anxiety, and depression-like symptoms), as a result of this tragedy, please call the Disaster Distress Helpline. Signs include:
- Sleeping too much or too little
- Stomachaches or headaches
- Anger, feeling edgy or lashing out at others
- Overwhelming sadness
- Worrying a lot of the time; feeling guilty but not sure why
- Feeling like you have to keep busy
- Lack of energy or always feeling tired
- Drinking alcohol, smoking or using tobacco more than usual; using illegal drugs
- Eating too much or too little
- Not connecting with others
- Feeling like you won’t ever be happy again
- Rejecting of help.
The number is 1-800-985-5990. It’s free to call and it’s available 24/7.
Please pass this information along. Even if it doesn’t help you, someone else might really need it.