Gleaning for the World collects disaster relief items for Mississippi tornado victims

Published: Mar. 29, 2023 at 6:34 AM EDT
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LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ) - Friday, a devastating and rare EF-4 tornado struck near Rolling Fork, Mississippi. It destroyed buildings and left thousands without homes.

Officials are calling this storm one of the deadliest tornados ever recorded in the state. According to the National Weather Service (NWS), the supercell traveled across the state for nearly an hour with maximum winds of 170mph. It finally let up 60 miles away in Silver City, Mississippi. This type of storm is extremely rare because less than 1% of tornados travel more than 50 miles.

This tornado is responsible for 26 reported deaths so far.

Gleaning For The World is responding to help those affected by the storm. The Concord-based nonprofit will be collecting disaster relief items in front of Sam’s Club in Lynchburg Wednesday, March 29, from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.

Needed items include nonperishable foods, bottled water (as well as gallon jugs) and sports drinks, hygiene items (including toothpaste, toothbrushes, hair brushes, shampoo, conditioner, bars of soap, adult diapers, and feminine supplies, etc.), baby supplies (diapers, bottles, formula, rash cream, etc.), pet foods and supplies, and cleanup items like large trash bags, gloves, and bleach.

“Responding to help victims of natural disasters quickly and efficiently is what our team at Gleaning is trained to do,” Gleaning’s president Jeane Smiley-Mason said.

“With a large-scale disaster like this, there are thousands of people in distress and needing help. Our community of supporters always comes through to help those in need and I’m asking once again for your help as we collect supplies and funds for this relief effort. When we can deliver a tractor-trailer loaded with essential supplies to a community who has lost everything, it gives those residents a sense of hope for the future. Please donate if you are able.”

Supplies and monetary donations can be dropped off at Sam’s Club Wednesday, or at Gleaning’s warehouse at 7539 Stage Road in Concord. You can give a financial gift over the phone by calling Gleaning at 434-993-3600, by mail at GFTW, PO Box 645, Concord, VA 24538, or you can give towards this relief effort on their secure website at