In the early morning hours on March 3, a number of devastating tornadoes swept across Middle Tennessee, claiming the lives of 26 people and injuring hundreds more. In spite of these harrowing events, the citizens of Tennessee proved why it’s called the “Volunteer State,” working alongside their neighbors to clean up the wreckage.
Though coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic currently dominates the news cycle, Tennesseans continue to grapple with the aftermath of the storm as they rebuild their homes and lives. As generous donors around the world reach into their pockets to help those impacted by the pandemic and natural disasters across the country, here are five organizations you can donate to help those affected in Middle Tennessee.
The Middle Tennessee Emergency Response Fund’s mission is to provide grants to nonprofits offering vital services to communities in need across Davidson County and the surrounding areas that were ravaged by the tornadoes. As of April 15, the CMF has donated more than $3 million to 83 nonprofits including Meharry Medical College, The Nashville Food Project, The Contributor and Music Health Alliance, collectively supporting vulnerable communities such as the elderly, veterans, homeless individuals and more. Donate to the Middle Tennessee Emergency Response Fund here.
The official visitors’ guide to Music City has instituted a fund that serves a dual purpose of helping people inflicted by the tornadoes and COVID-19. The NCVC’s charitable arm, Music Inc. Foundation, has deployed more than half a million dollars to families impacted by the disasters, with an emphasis on those who work in hospitality. The organization has also distributed boxed lunches to first responders and utility workers in communities where the tornadoes touched down. Additionally, NCVC has created the #KeeptheMusicPlaying T-shirt, with 100 percent of the proceeds going into the fund.
Putnam County was one of the hardest hit areas in the tornado’s path, resulting in 19 deaths and 92 injured persons, making it the worst natural disaster in the county’s history. As the only designated account serving Putnam County, 100 percent of donations to the Tornado Relief Fund will go to Cookeville residents, helping to repair their homes and offer financial assistance to families who lost loved ones or vital possessions. “Their climb toward rebuilding is going to long outlast the current relief efforts underway,” reads a statement on the foundation’s website. “Every cent donated to this fund will go directly to these families to help them rebuild their lives.”
Run by advocacy organization, Gideon’s Army, Rebuild North Nashville is working with fellow nonprofits like The Nashville Food Project and Hands on Nashville to deliver food and necessary supplies to one of the most devastated neighborhoods hit by the tornado. Additionally, Metro Nashville Public Schools is partnering with Second Harvest Food Bank to provide free meals to students in the area and across Davidson County. The Rebuild North Nashville site also provides tornado relief resources to residents in need. Donate to Gideon’s Army here.
Distributed through the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, the To Nashville, With Love Fund was initiated by a group of music industry professionals as a way to give back to members of the music community struck by the storms. Donations are divided among nonprofits that assist with disaster relief and mental health in the aftermath of tragedy. The fund was launched with a star-studded concert on March 9 as Brothers Osborne, Ashley McBryde, Brandi Carlile and Jason Isbell were some of the many artists who performed, demonstrating their passion and support for the community. “It doesn’t matter if you’re born in Nashville or no, when you love it you love it. And it loves you back. It’s got a real way of welcoming you,” Yola remarked during the show, capturing Nashville’s spirit. “That became this big concept of giving people this chance to send this love.”