Following this week’s historic winter storms, the Verizon Foundation is making a $250,000 donation to Feeding Texas to support immediate relief efforts in communities across the state. The organization will use the funds to help relieve hunger, an issue which was further exacerbated by the storms.
“As a member of these vibrant Texas communities Verizon is ready to support first responders, our customers and employees impacted by these catastrophic storms,” said Hans Vestberg, Chairman and CEO of Verizon. “We believe it’s critical to support our communities during a crisis, and to help them recover and rebuild after a storm has passed.”
“Hundreds of thousands of Texans impacted by the storm will turn to food banks in the days and weeks to come, on top of the millions already struggling to feed their families during the pandemic,” said Celia Cole, CEO of Feeding Texas. “On behalf of the 21 food banks in the Feeding Texas network, we are grateful to the Verizon Foundation for their support of our relief efforts. This donation will help Texas food banks keep their communities nourished and resilient through this crisis.”
Verizon customers can also assist in relief efforts by texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 and $10 will be added to their Verizon bill and donated to American Red Cross upon confirmation of the billing zip code. American Red Cross is supporting at least 35 warming centers with cots and blankets across the state and more.
Customers also can text RESCUE to 52000 to give a one-time $10 donation to the Salvation Army USA, which is providing shelter, food, and other necessary items to those in need.
Our engineers are out in the field in force and are urgently making repairs to the final few sites on our network that remain out of service from the severe weather that moved through Texas this week. The vast majority of customers near all remaining impacted sites should be able to access the network due to overlapping coverage (service from nearby cell sites), although in Austin and San Antonio, where the weather event lasted into mid-day yesterday, they may continue to see some impact to wireless performance such as slower data sessions. Those issues will resolve as our engineers and vendors are able to reach and repair the few remaining sites impacted by the severe weather.
Refueling operations will continue into the evening to keep permanent generators running in the midst of continued commercial power outages.
The situation remains fluid with ice and snow still present in parts of the state, continued power outages, and flooding from melting ice and water main breaks. Safety remains a top priority for our teams that are out working to repair and maintain the network for customers and first responders.
As part of our commitment to excellence and reliability, once all cell sites are back to normal operations, our teams will engage in comprehensive and thorough site inspections of all of our facilities to complete final repairs and maintenance and ensure our Network is prepared to keep customers and first responders connected during potential future weather events.