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School of Nursing collection effort 'overwhelming success,' second phase planned

10/8/2001
October 9, 2001

In response to the terrorist attacks on America, Austin Peay State University's School of Nursing sent more than 800 care packets and numerous boxes of bulk supplies to rescue workers in New York City and Washington, D.C.

"Nursing is about helping meet the needs of others. We saw lots of resources given to the families of victims, but we also were concerned about the needs of the rescuers themselves. Our focus as a school and community was to meet the care needs of the rescuers and volunteers," said Dr. Kathy Martin, director of the School of Nursing.

Individuals from various organizations, churches and businesses in Clarksville, Middle Tennessee and Southwestern Kentucky brought donations, including many families who involved their children in the endeavor.

Items collected included facial wipes, toothbrushes, toothpaste, tissues, throat lozenges, gloves, nonperishable snacks and many other types of care and comfort items.

"We tried to think about the environment they were working in and focused on care items that might ease stress or promote comfort for the front-line volunteers," said Martin.

The School of Nursing received official confirmation Sept. 19 from the Salvation Army Rescue Relief Distribution Warehouse in Springfield, Va., that the shipment had arrived, been offloaded and targeted for distribution.

"The donation drive was an overwhelming success. The community responded openheartedly. The care shown by the community made it successful above and beyond what we expected in such a short time frame," said Martin.

"The community has approached us about participating in a second phase of the disaster relief donation drive. We are trying to assess whether there is a need for a second phase and the type of items desired," said Martin.

Anyone interested in collecting, sorting, packing and loading donations for a second phase should e-mail Martin at martinkl@apsu.edu