United Furniture donates $150,000 for storm recovery

Three days after an anonymous donor set up a $150,000 fund to help Smithville tornado victims, another donor stepped up with a similar gift.
Larry George, CEO of United Furniture Industries, announced Sunday the establishment of a fund of up to $150,000 to help Chickasaw and Monroe county families that lost their home due to last Wednesday’s tornadoes.
United employs about 1,400 people in its facilities in Chickasaw and Monroe counties.
“We have all been overwhelmed by this tragedy and by the tremendous pain and hardship it has caused,” George said. “We want those in our community who have been devastated by this storm to know that we support them, as we all work together to rebuild and recover.”
Like the Smithville program, each eligible applicant will receive $1,000.
Eligible applicants are those identified by the Mississippi Emergency Management Association as “having their residence rendered inhabitable” by the tornados.
United’s grant also will be administered through the Three Rivers Planning amp& Development District, with help from the boards of supervisors from both counties.
Three Rivers representatives will be at Okolona City Hall on Tuesday and Wednesday and at the Wren Community Center on Wednesday and Thursday. Applications will be taken from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on those days.
Today and Tuesday, Three Rivers will be in Smithville from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in front of the Piggly Wiggly to take applications.
Randy Kelley, executive director of Three Rivers, said the donations will touch many lives.
“This will enable every storm victim in Chickasaw and Monroe who lost a home, due to the generosity of the anonymous donor and United Furniture, to get $1,000 to help meet their immediate needs,” he said.
Kelley said Three Rivers hopes to process claims at the end of each day and return to the communities the next day with checks.
Applicants may call Three Rivers and apply, but must also complete a half-page form. They also must present identification when picking up their checks.
Approval is subject to compliance with all eligibility requirements and guidelines for thrgrant program. Only one grant per household is available, and the grant application must be made by the head of the household.
Contact Dennis Seid at (662) 678-1578 or dennis.seid@journalinc.com.

Dennis Seid/NEMS Daily Journal