08/29/17 8:45pm

Here’s another helpful online tool from the civic hackers at Sketch City, this one for would-be volunteers: a crowdsourced, interactive map showing which shelters near you are in need of what resources — and which ones might need people to come over and help out. Each icon on the map represents a shelter or providing organization that’s helping evacuees who’ve been put out of their homes by Harvey flooding. Click on one and a panel on the left will indicate any supply needs or volunteer needs identified by the site. (A larger, full-browser-width version of the map is here.)

The map was put together by Amanda Shih, Dr. Neeraj Tandon, and Chris Ertel, and is linked to data assembled and continually updated by a group of dozens of local and not-so-local volunteers hooked up to the project by Sketch City, a Houston nonprofit technology group. (The same bank of is behind Sketch City’s other new mapping project — one that simply identifies available Harvey shelters to people seeking them.) The volunteers have been making regular phone calls to update the information in a shared Google Doc. (If that kind of call-and-type-from-home work is your preferred method of volunteering, go ahead — you’ll find a direct link to the underlying spreadsheet in the map.)

How and Where To Volunteer
08/29/17 6:45pm

Here’s a crowdsourced, interactive map showing more than 180 shelters and shelter-ish locations set up in the last few days to take in evacuees separated from soggy homes as a result of Harvey flooding. Most of the indicated locations are in the Houston area, but others farther afield have been added (and are welcome) as well.

To use the map, you’ll first want to click on the icon just below the top left corner to toggle off the legend. Then you can zoom in or out or pan around, and click directly on each location to read details — such as the address, phone number, whether there’s room for more people, and how recently the information has been updated. You can access a larger version of the map directly by going to houstonsheltermap.com.

If the map provides more info than you need right now, there’s an easier way to find the closest shelter to you that’s still accepting newcomers: Just text your Zip Code (the one where you are; it doesn’t have to be your home address) to 346-214-0739. It’s set up to text you back the location of the nearest open hurricane shelter.


Data Rescue Ops