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UT To Host Disaster Relief Drive



May 6, 2011

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The University of Tennessee, Knoxville campus and the UT Athletics Department are teaming up to show their Volunteer spirit by helping Tennessee counties affected by the recent storms.

From 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday, May 10, UT students and staff will be at Regal Soccer Stadium to collect items from the community to aid the residents of Bradley, Greene, Hamilton, Washington, Bledsoe, Cocke, Johnson, McMinn, Monroe, and Rhea counties.

The UT Volunteers football truck -- normally used to transport team equipment to away games -- will be parked at the Regal Soccer Stadium on Stephenson Drive, on the south side of UT's campus off Neyland Drive. UT has challenged the campus and surrounding community to fill the 18-wheeler.

"Our thoughts and prayers have been with those who suffered losses and now we need to help supply the practical items needed for recovery," said Chancellor Jimmy G. Cheek. "Members of our community have shown great concern for the affected areas and I know they will respond with even greater generosity to help us fill the truck."

Items requested include:
• Household cleaning supplies
• Bottled water
• New underwear
• Infant supplies, such as formula, diapers, and baby wipes
• Towels and wash cloths
• Toiletries - preferably in trial sizes
• Batteries
• Flashlights
• Tarps
• Duct tape

UT's student community service organization, TeamVOLS, is contributing items the group has collected from campus this week.

Knoxville-area Home Depot stores will also be taking part in the drive, donating supplies from each of nine local stores.

"Part of living in this community is taking care of one another," said Mike Hamilton, UT men's athletics director. "This is an opportunity for all of Knox County to band together and support our fellow Tennesseans who were affected by last week's storms."

On Wednesday, the UT Football truck will bring the donations to a Salvation Army distribution center to help people in Tennessee counties which were declared disaster areas after tornadoes swept through the state.

"It's important for us to teach our student-athletes about serving others," said Joan Cronan, UT women's athletics director. "People across our state were affected by storms last week, and it's our responsibility as Tennesseans to help them."

For more information, contact Drew Rutherford, UT Athletics (865-974-4669 or Andrew@utk.edu) or Beth Gladden, UT Media Relations (865-974-9008 or bgladden@utk.edu).

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