by Ashley Alden '09
Dear Severn School Community,
My name is Ashley Alden ’09 and I am currently a student at the University of Alabama. On Wednesday April 27, 2011 my University and the surrounding town was hit by the powerful tornadoes that blasted through the south. A significant portion of my town was destroyed, more than ten businesses were wiped off the map, entire neighborhoods were flattened, and thousands of Tuscaloosa residents are now homeless including hundreds of University students and employees.
Currently, the living conditions in Tuscaloosa are abysmal and the only way that my city will recover from this tragic event is if communities across the country assist in its rebuilding. For those of you who have not been following the coverage of this destruction, it has been classified as a Category 1 disaster; placing this event in the same category as Hurricane Katrina and September 11th. In Tuscaloosa there is wide-scale looting not only in the devastated areas but all around town and the water in the entire city is not safe to use for even a shower. A large area of the south was affected by this devastating storm but Tuscaloosa is special because it is not only my home but the future home of numerous Severn School students this coming fall. I am asking for your assistance. From my past experience, the Severn School community is one of the strongest and most supportive and I am asking that you extend your generosity to those who are enduring what I can only describe as an unbelievable obstacle.
If you are interested in helping the relief effort, there will be collection boxes, starting Tuesday, May 10, at the school collecting the following items: towels, blankets, school supplies, and baby supplies. I will send these items to the various Greek organizations on my campus that are hosting respective drives. There will also be a box for gift card donations due to the large demand for gift cards to all-purpose stores such as Target, Walmart, and Bed Bath and Beyond for groceries and basic necessities to be distributed at various shelters.
I was literally yards away from being in the category of students who lost their homes and all of their possessions. I consider myself extremely fortunate, so please join me in helping those who were not so lucky. Thank you so much, Ashley Alden ‘09