Harlan helping Florida

Some folks in Harlan County are again getting ready to take aid in the form of donated items to a hurricane ravaged state. Donations are being accepted at the Harlan Center and many local businesses this week and will be leaving for Florida on Saturday.

Leslie Bledsoe, one of the organizers of the project, said the donations will be taken to Tampa, Florida.

“We’re taking up donations to take to Tampa for the Hurricane Irma relief efforts,” Bledsoe said. “We’re working with Metropolitan Ministries in Tampa.”

Bledsoe explained Metropolitan Ministries is an organization dedicated to helping needy people.

“They already help house and feed homeless and low income people, so it’s going to be helping people that were already down on their luck before the hurricane,” Bledsoe said.

The Harlan group will also remain in Florida for a few days to help.

“This time we’re going to stay and volunteer for three days,” Bledsoe said. “We’ll volunteer Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and then start back on Wednesday evening.”

Donations will be accepted until 4 p.m. on Friday. Drop off locations for donations are the Harlan Center and area businesses including Coming Up Roses, Bargain Barn, Southern Wholesale, Community Action Agency (C.A.A.), Dream Furniture, Harlan Yoga and Perfect Ten.

Bledsoe mentioned no organization is behind the project, it is simply a group of people from different walks of life who want to help.

“We’ve been using #withlovefromHarlan to keep everybody updated on what we’re doing,” Bledsoe said.

Those wishing to donate are asked to donate items including diapers (all sizes), bleach, gloves, masks, trash bags, tampons, children’s books, puzzles, socks, underwear, handy wipes, baby wipes, peanut butter, cereal, deodorant, solar lights (do not require batteries) and ladders of all sizes (up to 10 feet).

“We’re just looking to do some good to help other people,” Bledsoe said.

For more information, call Leslie Bledsoe or Amanda Middleton at the Harlan Center at 606-573-4156 or call Leslie Bledsoe at 606-273-5456.

Reach Joe P. Asher at 606-909-4132