J.J. Watt: Donations in Pewaukee have 'just been phenomenal'

Posted at 4:32 PM, Aug 30, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-30 18:25:34-04

Donations for Texas flood victims have been coming in non-stop at Pewaukee High School after NFL star and Pewaukee native J.J. Watt put the call out for help.

The donation drive was announced Tuesday night by the J.J. Watt Foundation. They are hoping to fill semi-trucks with supplies and take them down to Texas this weekend. 

Pewaukee fifth grader Peter Wilkinson stopped to drop off some snacks and forks.

"It's gotta be really scary having a hurricane and floods, it would be hard not to help," he said.

With so many cars stopping on Wednesday, they had to start directing traffic, turning it into a donation drive-through.

"We make it as easy as possible," said Connie Watt, J.J.'s mother and the vice president of the J.J. Watt Foundation. 

She couldn't believe how many donations they've received in such a short amount of time.

"That's how Pewaukee is and the community out here, the whole Lake Country, it's just been phenomenal," she said.

They are looking for food items like boxed crackers and cookies, granola bars and fruit cups. Connie Watt said food items should be easy to open and not require a can opener.
"Even if it doesn't affect you directly, just think of what they're going through," said Natalie Driebel, who stopped to drop off donations with her mother. "Any way you can help, anything is good."

When the semi-trucks arrive in Texas, J.J. Watt will be there waiting with a team of people and will hand boxes of food directly to Texas families.

"I want these people to know their money is going directly to the people of Houston," he said. "I want them to be able to see that their money is going directly to the people. So I'll keep you updated the whole time. Our first wave of things is hopefully Sunday delivering things to the people of Houston."

In addition to the donation drive, Watt set up a Youcaring site that as of Wednesday afternoon had raised $6.7 million. Watt raised the goal to $10 million.

Watt also said on Twitter that the supplies and money will go toward victims in other parts of Texas outside of Houston. They plan to have multiple drop-off locations.

Volunteers will be at the high school until 8 p.m. Wednesday and then on Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Here's a list of items they are looking for:

  • Rolled blanket
  • Peanut butter
  • Boxed crackers
  • Boxed cookies
  • Boxed muffins
  • Granola bars
  • Apple sauce
  • Pudding cups
  • Fruit cups
  • Tuna
  • Plastic silverware
  • Square box of Kleenex

More information on the donation drive can be found here.