Reported by Huffington Post
After a weekend of devastation and tragedy, Southerners are beginning to piece their lives back together.
At least 44 people were killed in the severe weather that ripped across six southern states from Thursday to Saturday, reports the Associated Press. The National Weather Service is investigating 267 preliminary tornado reports, though the final total will be less, due to duplicate reports.
Residents of Oklahoma, Virginia, North Carolina, Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi are now tasked with rebuilding their lives in the face of destroyed homes, businesses and schools, as well as the loss of friends, family and neighbors.
As with any tragedy, the silver lining is in the way communities and people throughout the country have come together to lend their support --even when they themselves have suffered devastating losses. Amid damage assessments and cleanup efforts, residents and officials alike are looking to make repairs and start rebuilding what was lost. Below is a look at some of the ways people across the country are helping--and what you can do to lend your support.
In North Carolina--the hardest-hit state, with at least 21 deaths reported, almost 500 homes destroyed and more than 1,000 homes damaged--residents of a Raleigh subdivision came together to support and provide food for one another.
A group of teens collected cans and boxes of food and carried them to residents of the Serendipity Drive subdivision. Dianna Waddington, who organized the volunteers, lives on Serendipity Drive and lost her home to the tornado, but told NBC-17 that she was more concerned about her neighbors. "It's the right thing to do," she said of the spontaneous food delivery.
In the same neighborhood, another resident set up grills on his lawn and cooked for neighbors who had lost their homes in the tornado.