Food bank prepares to send aid to Sandy's victims

CharityThe Salvation Army

As Sandy tears through the Northeast, a food bank in Indianapolis is preparing to send truckloads of aid.

On Monday, the Midwest Food Bank began organizing drivers and rearranging its warehouse in order to respond as soon as the Salvation Army makes a call for help.

"We'll be sending Gatorade, Propel Water and Ozarka bottled water,” said John Whitaker, Director of Operations for Midwest Food Bank in Indianapolis. “That's the first thing people need."

Whitaker said the food bank will also be sending several loads of disaster relief boxes, which are filled with essential non-perishable food items and personal hygiene products.

"We probably haven't seen anything like this as far as what we've responded to since we've been open," Whitaker said.

That's a lot coming from an organization that delivered truckloads of aid to victims of Hurricane Katrina and tornado victims in Alabama. The food bank also provided more than $500,000 in aid to tornado victims in Henryville and Southern Indiana.

Early reports indicated that there could be even more need in the wake of Sandy.

"We anticipate doing great amounts of disaster relief for a month or better," Whitaker said.

Whitaker said there aren’t enough supplies currently on hand to sustain that kind of effort, which is why they are hoping to see Hoosiers help out.

"By the time we start responding, it's too late to backfill,” Whitaker said. “So now, before the storm has completely gone throughout the area, it's time for us to act now so that we can keep the pipeline of disaster relief full."

You can donate to the Midwest Food Bank online.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times