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More than $80K donated for relief

August 20, 2014
The Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) - Organizations say they have raised more than $80,000 in donations for tropical storm relief efforts on the Big Island.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Tuesday that at least 225 homes were damaged or destroyed, mostly in the Puna district south of Hilo.

Janice Bueltmann of Hawaii Island United Way says needs are changing day by day and rebuilding will take time and money. Bueltmann is coordinating the organization's relief efforts in Puna.

Article Photos

Crews try to restore power and communication lines Friday in areas of Puna hit by Tropical Storm Iselle.
AP file photo

"We're just trying to reach everyone as quickly as possible," Bueltmann said.

Hawaii Island United Way and sister organization Aloha United Way have collected more than $31,000 in online donations.

Bueltmann says another $50,000 has been donated by the First Hawaiian Bank Foundation and Bank of Hawaii, while even more money has been pledged.

The area was rocked by Tropical Storm Iselle, which started as a hurricane in the Pacific Ocean and carried strong winds and rain to the Big Island. The storm knocked over trees, snapped power poles, blocked roads and left people without electricity. It did not cause any deaths or major injuries.

A food-distribution charity says it has donated more than 5,000 pounds of food to more than 3,000 families. Other groups and companies are offering free legal advice, phone calls and Internet access.



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