HOUSTON -- As floods from Hurricane Harvey slowly begin to recede in Houston, and thousands of residents start the long journey of picking their lives back up from the aftermath, Coca-Cola's commitment to supporting its employees, customers and communities continues.

Though the outcome of the devastating floods in Texas is still being assessed, the Coke system’s pledge to help associates affected by the storm is in full swing.

Coca-Cola Southwest Beverages (CCSWB) employs 2,000 people in southeast Texas, and nearly 200 employees work at the company’s Minute Maid offices in Sugar Land. Hurricane Harvey impacted more than 300 employee homes and vehicles, with 130 reporting that their homes are "no longer livable.”

As these individuals and their families begin the road to recovery, Coca-Cola and its hundreds of thousands of employees across the world are helping.

Through the Coca-Cola Employee Disaster Relief Fund, employees facing financial hardship can apply to receive up to $3,000 to assist in temporary housing, medical bills and relocation costs. Additionally, the company is matching donations up to $100,000 to ensure that all affected are assisted through this difficult time.

Marc Perez (pictured above), a distribution manager in Glenbrook, Texas, oversees several employees impacted by the flooding. He recalled one story of an associate whose wife was pregnant and their home was destroyed. “It was devastating,” he recalls, “but we got him and his family into temporary housing and they are both safe and sound. He and his wife are so appreciative for the assistance.”

Stories like this paint a picture on the countless lives that were affected by this storm but more importantly, these stories also highlight a robust support network for each employee.

Rick Kehr, general manager, Coca-Cola Southwest Beverages, couldn’t be more proud of how Coca-Cola has responded. At a local level, Kehr’s team has been instrumental in assisting employees any way they can. From payroll advances to bringing in experts to speak on the recovery effort process, associates and their families are seeing a system that deeply cares for its people. 

“We work for a great system,” he said. “The amount of support that came to us was just tremendous. I can’t tell you how humbled and proud I am to be a part of this team.”

A Coca-Cola truck is loaded with water and other drinks on Sept. 9 for delivery to the Houston Food Bank following Hurricane Harvey.