A few things to remember if you want to provide aid to those affected by this unprecedented hurricane:
1. Cash is king. After seeing destroyed homes and people who have lost everything, we may be tempted to donate clothing, food, bottled water, or other supplies. Aid organizations say donations like that often create logistical nightmares and more expense. A financial donation can be spent on what is needed most at that particular moment.
2. Know to whom you are giving. Charity scams abound after natural disasters. Give to trusted, mainstream organizations. If you are unsure about a group, check it out at the Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance, the Charity Navigator, Charity Watch, or GuideStar.
3. One way to help is to donate blood. OneBlood is a non-profit organization that is located in almost all counties in Florida and in the southern regions of Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina. You can search for their blood drives here.
Here are a few organizations helping the victims of Hurricane Michael and how you can contribute:
American Red Cross
The American Red Cross says that in the past year it has raised $522.7 million to helpHurricane Harvey survivors in Texas and Louisiana. The agency says it "honors donor intent and all donations earmarked for Disaster Relief will be used to help people affected by disasters, big and small."Donate to the American Red Cross here.
Habitat for Humanity
Habitat for Humanity says its role after a natural disaster "is primarily in the long-term recovery of disaster-stricken communities." It says those long-term recovery needs are often the most underfunded aspect of disaster response and recovery. Donate to Habitat for Humanity here.
(MORE: The Latest News on Michael)
National Voluntary Organizations Active In Disaster
National VOAD is a coalition of more than 50 national faith-based, community-based and other non-governmental organizations and 55 state-level VOADs that work with local organizations.Donate to or volunteer with National Voluntary Organizations Active In Disaster here.
GlobalGiving is a nonprofit crowdfunding organization that supports grassroots charity projects in affected areas. The organization says it has launched a Hurricane Michael relief fund, which will supply food, water and medicine in the short term and invest in longer-term projects that will help communities rebuild. Donate to GlobalGiving here.
Find more organizations here
Charity Navigator has compiled a list of highly rated organizations planning to respond in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. The list is broken down into these categories: General Aid and Relief; Animal Care and Services; and Food and Hunger Relief.Find Charity Navigator's list here.