Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Donations Still Needed

We are still taking donations for kids affected by Katrina. Also, we would like to have donations "in stock" to be ready for upcoming disasters and/or hurricanes. If you would like to help, we would be greatly appreciative.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Some Christmas Cheer in New Orleans

A child smiles as he touches his santa hat during Christmas festivities in the New Orleans Central Business District.

Contributor From Coronado, Ca.

We want to thank the contributor and his son for their kind donations.If you read this, can you email us. We need to provide you with some information.Our email is

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Toys and Books Needed In Mississippi

If you can send toys and books to the following distribution centers, the children will be very grateful:

St Paul Methodist Church
6716 HIghway 90 East
Ocean Spring, MS 39564

ST Louis Distribution Center
449 Division Street
Biloxi, MS 39530
ATTN: Sheri

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Boys Donates Toys to Katrina Kids

From Tallahassee,Fl. Democrat:

Brian Leichus didn't think he'd win the free shopping spree at the Build-A-Bear Workshop in Destin.

Although he loves playing with stuffed toys, especially a favorite elf toy he's had for years, Brian's initial excitement over winning melted away.

His thoughts were on the images of devastation in New Orleans caused by Hurricane Katrina.

"I felt guilty because other people in the world didn't have anything," said Brian, a fourth-grade student at Maclay School.

Instead of adding more toys to his menagerie of stuffed animals, 9-year-old Brian wants to donate them to evacuee children who came to Tallahassee after the storm.

Saturday, Brian was given 45 seconds to grab all the toys he could fit in a large box. He decided to ask his best friend, Mohammad Afsh, to come along.

The Build-A-Bear Workshop allows children to be a part of the toy's process from start to finish. Children choose the color, the stuffing and the toy's name.

"I wish we had unlimited time and an unlimited box so I could help all the children (affected by Hurricane Katrina)," Brian said, with a big smile on his face.

"Yeah, just grab the whole store!" 9-year-old Mohammad chimed in and threw his arms in the air.

Betty Leichus, Brian's mother, said she was surprised how much of an impact the hurricane had on her youngest son. She said he saw a picture in the Democrat of a father sifting through what was left of his house. The father held a muddied, tattered teddy bear that belonged to his child.

Leichus, who serves on the Board of Directors for the American Red Cross, remembered Brian saying he felt guilty about winning the contest because he "didn't do anything to get it."

"It was one of those mom moments. I was really proud," Leichus said. "He really did surprise me. I thought it was a really nice gesture."

Mohammad, who has been Brian's best friend for eight years, said he's crazy about giraffes, and he would cry for days if he lost one of his stuffed animals. That's why he wants to help children who lost their favorite toys.

"Those kids are less fortunate then us. I wouldn't want them to forget how they lived. You don't want them to have bad things. I want them to be able to have good things to play with," Mohammad said.

Leichus' curiosity got the best of her, so she searched the Internet to see if other children were doing similar deeds. She found out her son was not the only child reaching out to young victims and found several stories of other children helping those affected by Hurricane Katrina.

But Leichus admits she's pleased Brian searched his own heart for a way to help.

"I was just happy to see that he was able to think of this on his own," Leichus said.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Ideas to Help Katrina Kids

Here are some ideas to help Katrina kids:

1.One person emailed me and she is throwing a birthday party for her daughter and asking that people bring a toy or book for a kid affected by Katrina. Excellent idea!

2.Set up a deposit box at your office or neighborhood business to collect toys and books for Katrina Kids.

3.Think of a Christmas function to collect toys and books.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Katrina's Trauma on Kids Concerns Experts

In a disaster within a disaster, unprecedented numbers of shaken children left in Hurricane Katrina's wake are testing the nation's network for emergency psychological help, according to caregivers and experts.

Counseling teams have been dispatched to shelters across the South where, beside overwhelmed parents, some children rested on cots with their heads covered, stared into nothingness, or cowered at a simple rain shower.

"When we gonna leave?" Israel Reed kept asking his mother at a shelter in Jackson, Miss., where he marked his 8th birthday with just a bowl of Rice Krispies.

At a shelter in Boynton Beach, Fla., a girl about 8 years old drew crayon pictures of her flooded New Orleans house with floating bodies of people and animals. Then her face turned somber.

"She ... wanted me to really understand," said psychologist Phil Heller, a volunteer counselor. "This was very scary."

The storm victimized hundreds of thousands of children, wrenching apart their families, washing away their homes, and separating them from everything else that was familiar, from friends to pets to stuffed animals.

Search For Missing Children

In the aftermath of hurricane Katrina, the U.S. Department of Justice has asked the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) to staff a hotline to take reports of missing children, missing adults, and found children.

If you are searching for someone who is missing or are caring for a child who is separated from his or her family, please call the Katrina Missing Persons Hotline at 1-888-544-5475.
Missing Kids

Thursday, September 08, 2005

News From Houston

Even though the numbers show there are dramatically fewer people staying in the Astrodome, that doesn't mean it's not a busy place.

Lines for food and showers are noticeably shorter. Stacked under the bleachers are unused cots, items that were scarce enough that a handful of evacuees fought over them in the early days of the crisis.

On the Dome floor, there is visibly more room to move about. Unused blankets are stacked neatly in piles of 10 or 12 in areas where evacuees used to sleep.

But the place remains a hive of activity, as people who have left come back to register their children for school, sign up for food stamps and apply for a growing amount of assistance.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Levee Repaired in New Orleans

A week after Hurricane Katrina, engineers plugged the levee break that swamped much of the city and floodwaters began to recede, but along with the good news came the mayor's direst prediction yet: As many as 10,000 dead.

Sheets of metal and repeated helicopter drops of 3,000-pound sandbags along the 17th Street canal leading to Lake Pontchartrain succeeded Monday in plugging a 200-foot-wide gap, and water was being pumped from the canal back into the lake. State officials and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers say once the canal level is drawn down two feet, Pumping Station 6 can begin pumping water out of the bowl-shaped city.

Some parts of the city already showed slipping floodwaters as the repair neared completion, with the low-lying Ninth Ward dropping more than a foot. In downtown New Orleans, some streets were merely wet rather than swamped.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Latest Update From Aftermath of Katrina

Troops patrolled the streets, rescuers hunted for stragglers and New Orleans looked like a wrecked ghost town yesterday as the evacuation of the city neared completion and the authorities turned to the grim task of collecting bodies in a ghastly landscape awash in numberless corpses.

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld greeted military and rescue officials on Sunday at a medical facility at the New Orleans international airport. In a city riven by violence for a week, there was yet another shootout yesterday. Contractors for the Army Corps of Engineers came under fire as they crossed a bridge to work on a levee, and police escorts shot back, killing three assailants outright and a fourth in a later gunfight, the police said, adding that a fifth suspect had been wounded and captured. There was no explanation for it, only the numbing facts.

The larger picture of death was just as murky. No one could say how many had died in the hurricane or were waiting to be rescued after the city's levees burst. One morgue at the St. Gabriel Prison near New Orleans was expecting 1,000 to 2,000 bodies. Hundreds were missing in nearby Chalmette. In Baton Rouge, state officials said the official Louisiana death toll stood at 59, but most said that thousands was a more realistic figure. More than 125 were known dead in Mississippi.

"I think it's evident it's in the thousands," Michael O. Leavitt, the secretary of health, told CNN on Sunday. Seven days after Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, the New Orleans known as America's vibrant capital of jazz and gala Mardi Gras celebrations was gone. In its place was a partly submerged city of abandoned homes and ruined businesses, of bodies in attics or floating in deserted streets, of misery that had driven most of its nearly 500,000 residents into a diaspora of biblical proportions.

As the effects of the crisis spread across the nation, 20 states have opened their shelters, homes and schools to the refugees. But moving the population of New Orleans to other parts of the country has created overcrowding and strains. In Texas, where nearly half the refugees are jamming stadiums, civic centers and hotels, Gov. Rick Perry said the state's capacity was almost exhausted. Thousands of people were also arriving at Fort Chaffee in Arkansas.

In Baton Rouge, at two locations, hundreds of people, many carrying umbrellas to protect them from the scorching heat, were lined up for hours waiting for emergency food stamps and other forms of public assistance. And there were no quick solutions. Making New Orleans habitable again was expected to take many months, even a year. Meanwhile, there were holdouts in the city, unknown numbers of people who refused to go. They were being urged to leave for their own safety. Officials warned of an impossible future in a destroyed city without food, water, power or other necessities, only the specter of cholera, typhoid or mosquitoes carrying malaria or the West Nile virus.

As helicopter and boat crews searched flooded neighborhoods for survivors yesterday and officials focused for the first time on finding, collecting and counting the dead, Michael Chertoff, the secretary of homeland security, warned that Americans must brace for some gruesome sights in the days ahead.

"We need to prepare the country for what's coming," Mr. Chertoff said on the "Fox News Sunday" television program. "We are going to uncover people who died hiding in the houses, maybe got caught in the floods. It is going to be as ugly a scene as you can imagine."

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld went to the stricken states yesterday to assess the damage and pledge relief, and President Bush planned another visit to Louisiana and Mississippi today. He flew over the area on Wednesday as he returned to Washington from a vacation at his Texas ranch, and made an inspection tour on Friday.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Postage Calculations

The media mail rate (Books and Tapes) for sending a 10 pound package to the Houston area is $4.84. Your contributions for postage is most appreciated.

Items for Kids

Suggested Items for Kids:

Crayons/Coloring Books
Writing Paper
DVDs for Children
Construction Paper
Children's Books

Postage Contributions

If you don't want to send cash, go to the post office and purchase stamps and mail them to us so we can use the postage to mail the packages.

DVDs and VHS Tapes Qualify for Media Mail

Don't forget that DVDs and VHS tapes qualify for media mail when sending through the post office.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Mailing Address

To mail books and toys, please mail to the following:

Books and Toys for Katrina Kids
3711 Shamrock W. L-257
Tallahassee,Fl. 32309


For those of you familiar with PayPal, you can send contributions for postage to my PayPal address which is

Books and Toys for Katrina Kids

Hello, I live in Tallahassee, Florida with my wife and my dog Chrissie. I have a son and a daughter that are working for AmeriCorps in Wyoming and Maryland respectively. I wanted to do something to help regarding this tragedy and I think the children are the most vulnerable now. They have been ripped from their homes in such a traumatic way. If we can donate a book or a toy that will help give them some comfort, then that will help in some small way.

I urge you to help in this effort by either sending a toy or book to me or donating money to help with the postage. If you send a book or books, you can send media mail which is very inexpensive. I and my wife(and hopefully others) will do all the boxing, packaging, and mailing. Thanks to all of you that can help!