Local Catholic schools and parishes are continuing to collect donations to aid the families in St. Patrick School and Church in Washington, Ill., who lost everything when an EF4 tornado ripped through their community Nov. 17.

The “Washington to Washington” drive is being conducted by Our Lady of Lourdes Grade School and Parish, St. Francis Borgia Grade School and Parish, St. Gertrude Grade School and Parish and St. Francis Borgia Regional High School.

Orange Leaf in Washington also is supporting the schools’ effort and will host a fund-raiser Thursday, Dec. 5, from 4 to 9 p.m.

The schools are seeking cash and gift cards for about 90 St. Patrick families who lost everything in the tornado.

St. Patrick School and Church were not damaged, and are open.

Gift cards to stores like Target and Wal-Mart and cash donations are being sought.

People can drop off donations at any of the schools and churches. For more information, people may call OLL at 636-239-5292.

The collection will run until Dec. 10.

According to reports, approximately 120 people were injured and between 250 and 500 buildings were damaged or destroyed in that Illinois town.

Public and Catholic school officials here said the two towns not only share a name, but are similar in size.

Residents also can donate to relief efforts by texting REDCROSS to 90999 or by visiting the American Red Cross website.