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Downtown Drives for Haiti

By Ed Fuentes
Published: Friday, January 29, 2010, at 01:31PM
IMGP3654 Ed Fuentes

Sports radio personality Vic "The Brick" Jacobs works the lunch-time commute during Thursday's Haiti relief fundraiser outside City Hall.

Main street became a toll road on Thursday, as Salvation Army volunteers, members of the media and elected officials lined up to collect cash donations to assist victims of the Haiti earthquake.

The drive was spearheaded by the offices of City Councilmembers Bernard Parks and Jan Perry, and both electeds worked the line during the morning and afternoon rush hours.

"We did this two years ago for Katrina, and it was successful. Around $85,000 was raised," said Perry. Thursday's event was even more successful, raising a tally of $130,000 by day's end.

A large portion of that came from Radio Korea, which presented the effort a check for $109,389.

All day long, car driving donors dug into pockets for loose dollars. So did riders. Bus drivers using Main as the route warned passengers of the delay. More than once, a driver would open the door to hand off a donation collected by passengers while waiting to pass through the check point.

At one point, Parks playfully hopped on a waiting bus to see if anyone wanted to drop in some change.

Late in the day, one UPS driver had only a few quarters to drop in the donation bucket. "Is that all you got?" teased a volunteer. "It's my 5th time passing by," the driver laughed. "I started with paper and I'm left with coin. I gave $10 today."

EMAIL ADD: Dawn Wright sends word on Friday afternoon that the total from day of fund raising was $133,532.10.


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