Here's how you can help with heat relief this summer in Maricopa County
Efforts to protect people from potentially deadly heat are already underway across Maricopa County. And there are a number of opportunities for the public to help.
The Maricopa Association of Governments' Heat Relief Network includes more than 200 sites across the Valley where people can access air conditioning, water and other forms of assistance.
Dozens of Heat Relief Network locations, including community centers, public libraries and charitable organizations, are now collecting donations of bottled water. Donation sites are listed on the Heat Relief Network interactive map.
Among participating organizations is the Salvation Army. Tim Smith, Salvation Army divisional secretary for metro Phoenix, told KJZZ News in addition to accepting water donations, the organization is also now looking for volunteers to staff its cooling shelters.
“When those excessive heat warning days are declared, we’re happy to have people sign up to take a shift at one of those locations just to help provide water and provide that cooling experience for those who might need it," Smith said.
425 people died from heat-related causes last year in Maricopa County — the most on record. The county has already confirmed four heat-related deaths so far this year.