Student’s relief effort helps Texans


Photo Credit: Max Lindley Max Lindley stands beside some of many contributed boxes. The packages were mailed to a hurricane shelter in Houston.

by Jenny DeStefano, FaceBook Manager

While Hurricane Harvey decimated areas of Texas and shook the lives of civilians forever, one Glen Rock teen dedicated himself to a relief effort.

Glen Rock High School junior Max Lindley organized a clothing and shoe drive for hurricane victims in Houston, Texas. Donations flooded in from the announcement date until the items were shipped that weekend.

“Max took this upon himself,” his mother, Wendy Orseck, said. “Max is a very caring individual, so it did not surprise me that he wanted to help in any way that he could.”

Realizing that the victims may have lost nearly all of their belongings, Lindley quickly arranged for donations to include clothing and other necessary items, rather than asking solely for shoes.

Before the drive could even begin, Lindley had to consider how he would get started, the process of shipping out the boxes, and the drive’s overall effect on hurricane victims.

The first task on Max’s list (after running the idea past his mom) was to get the word out. On Tuesday, Aug. 29, he posted on the Glen Rockers FaceBook page and from there the donation count quickly skyrocketed.

“Most people are willing to help out anybody who is in need and any people who are less fortunate,” Lindley’s sister, Ana, said. “Just spreading the word and making sure people know all the details will get you a lot of donations.”

With the collection rapidly exceeding expectations, Lindley and his family shipped out approximately fifteen bags and boxes throughout the following weekend, mainly on Friday and Saturday, to Louisiana. Each box ranged from a minimum weight of seventeen pounds to a maximum of fifty three pounds. After being dropped off at the post office, the packages’ journey did not stop there. They traveled by U-Haul to Max’s contact in Houston from Louisiana.

“The best parts of the experience were when I would come home from being out and there were more clothes, then I’d get up in the morning and there were more clothes, and it just kept on piling up,” Lindley said. “I also loved when we stacked them up because it was all for people in need.”

Though by the weekend the drive had come to a close, donations did not stop showing up at Max’s door.  In fact, he still has about five bags of contributions in his garage. Once all of the mail had arrived at its destination, Lindley received a text message from his colleague.

“I waited until the following day when they got there, and my friend texted me, ‘You are the man, this is amazing,’” Lindley said. “He then turned his sneaker consignment shop into a donation place, so he took all the clothes and shoes, dumped them out, and let everyone come and take what they needed.”

Soon after Hurricane Harvey impacted Texas, Hurricanes Irma, Maria, and Jose followed a path of destruction in the Florida and Caribbean areas. With the many natural disasters that have occurred, relief efforts such as Lindley’s are in the works.

“For me, it’s kind of put things into perspective. I’m so lucky that I’m able to go to sleep under a roof and in my own bed, have clothes on my body, and shoes on my feet,” he said. “Why shouldn’t anybody else have that?”