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As World Changing looks at the most pressing concerns in the aftermath of Katrina, The San Jose Mercury News (reg. required) is helping LAist by reminding us, once again, of the kindness of strangers. Locally, corporations like Disney and Occidental Petroleum had donated over $3.5 million to the cause while the Dodger Stadium Red Cross center had collected over $350,000 in individual contributions by early evening yesterday. And that's not to mention the people that just got up and headed directly into the horror:

Officials said eight 14-person swift water rescue teams, 11 urban search and rescue teams - including 70 personnel from the Los Angeles County Fire Department - and more than 100 civilian doctors, nurses and paramedics were mobilized at the request of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Some arrived in Lafayette, La., early Wednesday, while others were headed to Houston where they would await orders.

We've seen lots of people discuss the slowness of the Red Cross website. The local version of the site is moving much more smoothly and you can donate also has a pretty comprehensive giving list.

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Oh, and if you don't have cash to spare but do have some old cell phones lying around, phones for life wants to take them from you and give them to the elderly and the shut in in the ravaged cities...which will be useful once cellular service is back up. They will be collecting them at Union Station on Friday.

Want to know what the destruction of an entire city does to those that got out in time? Submerged reminded us that America is now a country with refugees of its own.