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Southland Conference Release | August 31, 2017

Southland Conference begins charitable efforts following impact of Hurricane Harvey

McNeese University is one of many schools to assist in relief efforts for victims of Hurricane Harvey.

FRISCO, Texas – The Southland Conference, home to numerous institutions and communities directly impacted by the multiple landfalls of Hurricane Harvey, and its subsequent and unprecedented rainfall and flooding, announced Friday a contribution of $100,000 to the American Red Cross for storm relief efforts. It is also expected that the member institutions of the Southland will immediately begin charitable collection and giving efforts to address relief needs in their specific communities and the larger region.

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Please help the people affected by Hurricane Harvey

“All of us in the Southland Conference are devastated by the unparalleled flooding and destruction, and the heartbreaking personal impacts the storm has had in our Gulf Coast communities,” said Southland Commissioner Tom Burnett. “For almost six decades, our organization has benefitted so much from the wonderful people in our region, and we are indebted to our home areas and those individuals that are currently in need and will be for an extended period. We hope this modest contribution can assist many of these great individuals and their families in their recovery. Further, I know our member institutions, their administrations, staffs and student-athletes are preparing for significant charitable and volunteer work for the storm victims in the foreseeable future.” 

RELATED: Houston's Kelvin Sampson starts clothing drive for Hurricane Harvey relief

In addition to Harvey’s unthinkable impact in the Houston area, home of Southland member Houston Baptist University, it made its first destructive landfall last week near fellow member Texas A&M-Corpus Christi University. It brought more devastating rain and flooding with its second landfall overnight Tuesday and into Wednesday at the Texas/Louisiana coastal border, near the campuses of Lamar University and McNeese State.

As the storm slowly moved in the past few days, it also created campus closings at Sam Houston State University, Stephen F. Austin, Northwestern State University, Nicholls State University, Southeastern Louisiana University and the University of New Orleans.

Thus, Harvey has adversely impacted 10 of the 13 Southland universities, and altered playing schedules for almost all of the league’s fall sports teams.

MORE: Schools lend helping hand as Hurricane Harvey alters travel plans across Texas 

The greater Houston area serves as a geographic center of the Southland Conference and is home to a large base of students and alumni from the league’s 13 institutions. The Southland’s annual men’s and women’s basketball tournament has been played in Katy, located in suburban west Houston, for the last decade. McNeese State is the longest continuous member of the Southland (1972), while Lamar was a charter member of the league in 1963 and returned as a member in 1998.

The Southland Conference also invites other individuals and organizations to make needed donations as they are able to. Below is a sampling (but not an exhaustive list) of charitable organizations involved in Harvey relief and recovery.
Sampling of (and links to) Charitable Organizations in Affected Areas: 

American Red Cross
The Salvation Army
Houston Food Bank
Houston SPCA
Food Bank of Corpus Christi
Samaritan’s Purse
Catholic Charities of Southwest Louisiana
Catholic Charities of Southeast Texas
Catholic Charities of Corpus Christi
United Way of Greater Houston
United Way of Beaumont and North Jefferson County
United Way of Mid & South Jefferson County (Port Arthur)
United Way of Southwest Louisiana (Lake Charles)
United Way of the Coastal Bend (Corpus Christi)
Greater Houston Community Foundation
Texas Diaper Bank
Southeast Texas Food Bank
Goodwill Industries of Southeast Texas and Southwest Louisiana
Goodwill Houston