Help if You Can.

This is not the normal content you find in The Drift, but these are not normal times up here in Vermont. So many readers and friends have called or written to ask how we at Upstream Group were affected by the historic flooding in the Green Mountain State. While our offices and homes were largely unaffected, our neighbors were not as lucky. Thirteen rural communities remain cut off from the outside world as roads and bridges have been washed away; hundreds of homes have been damaged or destroyed; and much of this destruction is happening in the areas that can least afford to rebuild and recover.

I'm passing along the names of some local and national organizations that are bringing relief and hope to Vermonters at this very difficult time. Upstream Group will be making donations to these charities in honor of our customers and readers of The Drift. We hope you'll consider doing so as well.

Text FOODNOW to 52000 to donate $10 to Vermont Foodbank. The Foodbank will turn each donation into $60 for families in need.

You can donate to the United Way's Vermont Disaster Relief Fund online, or buy sending a donation to your local United Way. Just make sure your donation is marked for the "Vermont Disaster Relief Fund."

You can also donate to the American Red Cross of Vermont and the New Hampshire Valley. The Red Cross set up shelters immediately after Irene hit for flooded-out families to stay in. Donations can be made at or by calling 800-660-9130.

The VT Irene Flood Relief Fund is raising money to help people and communities affected by flooding. 100% of all donations will be distributed to businesses and families.

We have a special connection to the town of Waterbury, as a longtime member of our team has his home and business there. Please visit "Revitalizing Waterbury" and click on "Flood Relief." Or contact Gene Kirby @ 802-272-6515.

Thank you for your generous support.