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Shepherd responds to water contamination affecting 300,000 in southwest W.Va.

ISSUED: 13 January 2014
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Owens
(Shepherd responds to water contamination affecting 300,000 in southwest W.Va.)

Shepherdstown, WV--Shepherd University has stepped up to assist 300,000 West Virginians in nine counties after a chemical spill in southwest W.Va. resulted in a State of Emergency being issued. Responding to the call by state Sen. John Unger II asking "all in the Eastern Panhandle to join in assisting the people impacted by this disaster in Charleston and the surrounding area," Shepherd allowed students from the affected areas to return to their residence halls early from winter break and is providing a drop-off site for donations of needed items.

Holly Frye, assistant vice president for student affairs at Shepherd, was contacted to provide a drop-off location for donations by Unger, who is coordinating the Eastern Panhandle Relief Response. Frye said, "When a crisis or need arises, the students, staff, and faculty at Shepherd are ready to do whatever they can to help. Shepherd University was asked to serve as a Jefferson County drop-off location for supplies, and the Wellness Center seemed to be the perfect location. Our students and staff are not only collecting these much needed items, but they are organizing, packing, labeling, and preparing them for delivery. As of this morning, the response to the request for supplies has been overwhelming."

The items needed include distilled water for medical devices, sanitizer, wipes, liquid baby formula, paper plates, plastic utensils, and microwavable meals (not frozen). There is also an urgent need for boxes in which to package the items for delivery. Those wishing to donate items can drop them off at Shepherd University's Wellness Center, located at 164 University Drive, no later than noon on Wednesday. Check the center's website for hours of operation: www.shepherdwellness.com.

-30-CRANDALL

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