Maria Protti sends along valuable information. There is a lot of detail so I'll put this in two messages.
This weekend I sent a box of brand new, practical clothing hoping it will get to the Astrodome ASAP. But, I made many mistakes that cost precious time. I am writing this for other law librarians who are also purchasing and sending clothes to the hurricane victims. If only I had known a few days ago what I know now . . .
1. Elizabeth Osborne sent a request to the law librarian community to help her colleague Catherine Whitney gather clothing for immediate distribution to the Houston Astrodome. Here's the delivery address:
HBA Clothing Drive
c/o Catherine Whitney, Assistant Librarian
Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
700 Louisiana, Suite 1600
Houston, TX 770022 Phone 713.546.5125
I sent my clothing purchases to Catherine rather than another aid group, because Catherine is close to the Houston Astrodome, and law librarians are reliable. (Ever been on a committee with a law librarian? Law librarians always carry their weight.). The call for clothing went out to our own profession, and we have a colleague willing to make sure any stuff gets to the Astrodome. That's enough reason for me.
2. Department stores have a policy of not allowing a customer to purchase more than ten quantities of one item. You need special permission. Maybe they think you are going to resell the stuff. To get around the policy, get permission from the store manager. Or, if the manager doesn't have authority, call corporate headquarters to get permission. Remember the corporate owner may have a different name than the store.
3. Think clearance, the summer season stuff is on sale now. You can get more bang for your buck if you go to a store's clearance section.
4. Research is fun. So, I started to gather quotations of hope, and meant to write them down and put an inspiring saying inside each article of clothing. From leaders of Creole tradition, blues musicians, zydeco song lyrics, that sort of thing. This exercise was abandoned as too time-consuming and preachy. In the end, I wrote "courage" on some of the clothing tags and left it at that.