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Making Donations to Disaster Areas


Money is the best donation

Monetary contributions allow professional relief organizations to purchase exactly what disaster survivors most urgently need. In addition, they allow relief supplies to be purchased at locations as near to the disaster site as possible. Purchasing supplies, particularly food, in the disaster area stimulates the local economy and ensures the supplies arrive quickly.

Donations of money given to recognized relief organizations are often tax deductible. And, unlike commodities, there are no transportation fees for cash donations!

The National Donations Management Network has established an Internet portal to make it easy to donate cash to reputable relief organizations. Choose the state you wish to help, and you will find a list of organizations active in the relief effort.

If you have trouble navigating the NDMS website during a Maine disaster, you can call 2-1-1 Maine (dial 2-1-1, toll free) and they will assist you.

Offer first, wait for the need

The National Donations Management Network also makes it easy to offer donations of goods to help survivors.

Simply go to the website, choose the State you wish to help, and you'll be able to list the goods you are willing to donate. When those goods are needed, you will be contacted to arrange transportation.

Again, 2-1-1 Maine (dial 2-1-1, toll free) can assist you if you have difficulty with the website during a Maine disaster.

Use small amounts locally

Some groups may spontaneously collect miscellaneous items for survivors. Consider giving them to a local charity, homeless shelter, or food bank. That will assure their being used by those in need.

Or hold a community yard sale to raise money for a relief organization.


  • Money is almost always the best donation
  • Contact a trusted agency and make the offer of money, goods or services you wish to donate. They will do their best to help you help the survivors of a disaster. The easiest way to do this is to go to the National Donations Management Network to donate or offer other assistance
  • Thanks to people like you - generous, well informed, and involved - relief organizations can make a real difference in the world.

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