WRAL-TV Raises $94,000 With Unique Oklahoma Disaster Relief Telethon

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Partners with University of N.C. School of the Arts and Statewide Public Television Station UNC-TV

Here to Help Disaster Relief It started as an interesting idea and resulted in $94,000 dollars for the people of Oklahoma who lost everything in the devastating May tornadoes.

WRAL’s commercial-free, primetime broadcast of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts’ award-winning production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! was edited to insert live cut-ins from the television studio. Forty volunteers from the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army of Wake County staffed the phone banks for three and a half hours.

All donations benefit those two national organizations currently supporting families in Moore, Oklahoma. WRAL’s Here to Help: Disaster Relief Telethon was simulcast on statewide public television on UNC-EX.

“This was a true partnership, a uniquely North Carolina way to help those families who are hurting in Oklahoma,” says Steven D. Hammel, Vice President and General Manager of WRAL-TV. “The results truly demonstrate the power of local television, both commercial and public, to be both lifelines in the moment of emergency and in the aftermath. We gave our community the opportunity to help and, like so many times before, they rose to the occasion with heart and generosity. This is who we are. It’s what we do.”

WRAL.com continues to take donations online: http://www.wral.com/help-victims-of-oklahoma-tornado/12467906/

The commercial free telethon and Oklahoma! broadcast was made possible with permission from Rodgers & Hammerstein: An Imagem Company (formerly The Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization). 

Thanks to WRAL-TV’s Debbie Tullos for this capcom story.

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