Sheriffs collect at Big Y for hurricane relief

  • Lt. Chris Pelletier from the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office takes donated items to load them into a truck for hurricane relief in Florida and Puerto Rico. Contributed photo

Recorder Staff
Friday, September 29, 2017

GREENFIELD — The Franklin County Sheriff’s Department has collected $1,200 in cash donations and filled a 26-foot U-Haul truck with hurricane relief items for communities in Puerto Rico and Florida.

About a dozen employees from the Sheriff’s Department collected donations outside of Big Y all day Wednesday and Thursday, which will be shipped to Puerto Rico and Florida following hurricanes Maria and Irma.

“This event was a huge success,” Sheriff Christopher Donelan said. “There was lots of baby stuff, lots of food, lots of water. A lot of people brought work gloves and tools and things that folks in Puerto Rico are going to need as they try to clean up and rebuild their property.”

He added that several Big Y employees also helped hand out flyers to shoppers entering the store, which included a list of suggested donations customers could pick up while shopping.

“It worked really, really well,” Donelan said.

The initiative is part of a wider effort by the Massachusetts Sheriffs’ Association. Every sheriff in the state is holding a similar drive in their counties, and the effort is also being coordinated through the Florida Sheriff’s Association.

Donelan said his department is working with an organization in Holyoke that will help ship the items to Puerto Rico. Next week, tractor-trailer trucks from the Massachusetts Sheriffs’ Association will bring donations to Florida.