Champaign County comes together to help livestock impacted by Harvey

Champaign County comes together to help livestock impacted by Harvey (WKEF/WRGT)

CHAMPAIGN COUNTY, Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) - As Hurricane Irma is set to make landfall this weekend, people are still cleaning up the devastation from Hurricane Harvey in Texas and along the gulf coast.

The West Liberty-Salem and Urbana communities are banding together to send four semi-truck loads of hay and veterinary supplies to help farmers and livestock in need.

"They are currently, or at least they were before the national guard got pulled out, they were delivering round bales of hay to animals by helicopter," said Brad Yost, a co-coordinator of the donation drive.

"They're feeding animals by boat, by any means possible just to keep these animals surviving," Yost continued, "It seems like there's been a decent amount of relief effort for supplies, food, shelter, building supplies for people, and not a whole lot for the livestock community."

Yost said the donation drive started as a Facebook post and snowballed into 4 semi-trucks filled with hay for Houston.

"That's America," Yost said, "It's people helping people and, you know, livestock can't help themselves you've got to feed them."

Organizers said by the time they leave on Sunday, they will be transporting between 2,200 and 2,500 bales of hay for hurricane relief.

Yost sad it's all been donated by area farmers, and the trucks and driver time are being donated by volunteers and local trucking companies.

West Liberty-Salem schools Future Farmers of America (FFA) is also helping with the heavy lifting.

"We've got at least 800 square bales that need to be loaded by hand, and these kids are stepping up and wanting to help," Yost said.

"It's definitely devastating," said Adalyn Caudill, FFA secretary, "All those people lost houses and what not, but the side that we see I guess or what we can relate to is the agriculture side. The animals, the cows are out there without any hay and standing in three feet of water."

Yost said they are still accepting donations until Sunday.

"We've got the equipment, we're getting supplies donated, you know if they want to help out whether it's ten bucks or ten bales of hay, I mean we'll take anything," he said.

Some of the volunteers are driving the donated trucks, along with truckers donating their rigs.

If you want to donate to their fuel costs or have more supplies, contact Tish Dyke at 937-597-7570.

A community sendoff is planned for Sunday afternoon in the Urbana Square.

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