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Hurricane Katrina: Some ways to help 

The following are just a few ways you can help Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.

The American Red Cross: www.redcross.org, or call the SLO chapter at 543-0696. The Red Cross needs monetary donations; at this time they are not accepting bulk goods, such as food, bedding, and clothing. They are also looking for people willing to volunteer as soon as December. Volunteers must complete a three-hour course and be able to commit to three weeks. Contact the SLO Red Cross for more info.

The Salvation Army: To donate to The Salvation Army, send checks to P.O. Box 2654, Paso Robles, CA 93447. Make sure to write "Katrina Hurricane Relief" on all checks. Or visit www.salvationarmyusa.org to donate online.

United Way of America: www.unitedway.org. The United Way is set up to help victims in the long term, but if you want to help victims now, United Way says give to the American Red Cross. To give to United Way's Hurricane Katrina Response Fund, you can send money to the local SLO chapter and they will forward 100 percent of your money. Contact SLO United Way at 541-1234, info@unitedwayslo.org, or www.unitedway.slo.org.

Mail Plus at 791 Price St., Pismo Beach, is offering free shipping of hurricane relief goods. Mail Plus has partnered with a shipping store in Baker, La. to help distribute relief goods to shelters. Most-needed items are canned or nonperishable food, baby formula, sheets, batteries, both adult and infant diapers, snacks, and phone cards. Contact Mail Plus at 773-5106 for more info.

Mid-State Bank and Trust plans to match up to $25,000 in donations for hurricane victims. The bank established an account to accept contributions, which will benefit the Red Cross. Checks made payable to the American Red Cross will be accepted at all Mid-State branch locations through September. For more info, call 473-6885.

The SLO County Farm Bureau will donate a portion of the proceeds generated by the upcoming SLO County Western Music, Poetry & Arts Festival to help farm and ranch families and rural communities affected by Hurricane Katrina. Proceeds will go to the Farm Bureau Hurricane Ag Fund, which was recently created by the American Farm Bureau Federation. The SLO County Western Music, Poetry & Arts Festival will be held Sept. 10. So put your boots on this weekend for a good cause. See page 42 for more info.

-J.P.

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