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Austin gem, University of Texas professor and celebrity Matthew McConaughey looked the part of a Texas politician sitting in front of an American flag when he took to social media to discuss the winter storm that had ransacked his home state.

McConaughey, a native Texan and Austin homeowner, announced that with all the damage and repair work in store, he and wife Camila are working on a virtual benefit put on by their just keep livin Foundation to help the state get back on its feet. They are also posting daily updates on their social media on resources available.

"While most of the power is, thankfully, being restored, the busted water lines from hospitals to so many homes has left so many Texans without the bare necessities they need to survive," McConaughey said in the video.

The Austinite is just one of several native Texas celebrities and influencers who have reached out or donated to the Lone Star State.

Beyonce and sister Solange are working with organizations in their hometown of Houston to bring relief to residents. Beyonce, as part of her BeyGood Foundation, has teamed up with The Bread of Life Disaster Relief Assistance Fund's Houston branch. The fund is providing up to $1,000 in one-time assistance to Texas residents in need, but the first round of applications are already closed due to high demand.

Meanwhile, Solange has partnered with Mutual Aid Houston to provide assistance to homes after the devastating freeze.

Longhorns football alumnus Michael Huff has swept aid across the state, first paying for thousands of tacos as well as hundreds of BBQ plates and chicken sandwiches while most Austinites could only hope for warm food. He later sent the same amenities to residents of Dallas, Fort Worth and Houston.

East Texas native and country music star Kacey Musgraves took a topical spin on helping the community with a commemorative jab at U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, who left the state for a Cancun vacation. T-shirts with the phrase "Cruzin' for a Bruzin'" selling on her website will benefit causes including the American Cross of Central and South Texas, Casa Marianella and Feed the People Dallas.

And close to home Austin food blogger Jane Ko partnered with Austin FC and local Austin restaurants, helping thousands of hot meals be delivered around the city with the more than $90,000 she raised to go toward relief efforts. Additonally, Austin musicians Willie Nelson and Jackie Venson retweeted resources and help to their audiences.

U.S. Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez proved that you don't have to live in the Lone Star State to send help, while advocating for better living conditions and instructing Texans on basic steps to help ensure FEMA aid. And in the same fashion, model and influencer Chrissy Teigen asked followers for their expertise, retweeting helpful information to a large global following.

Texas still has a long way to go in terms of recovery but one thing is always certain: Texans are in it together.


Pearl Lantana Apartments is one of many apartment complexes around town without running water due to plumbing issues. (Laura Figi/Austonia)

The last night Stephanie Landgraf, 25, spent in her apartment, off of Rundberg Lane, was on Valentine's Day. First, her power went off, only to return shortly after the complex lost water. Since then, she's been staying with friends. "There's no end in sight," she told Austonia. "At this point, I'm just angry."

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  • 1 1/2 oz Tito's Handmade Vodka
  • 4 oz soda water
  • 2 orange slices, quartered
  • 2 lemon slices, quartered


Slice oranges and lemons. Muddle slices and Tito's Handmade Vodka in a glass. Add ice and top with soda water. Enjoy!

Cara Caulkin, Jane Ko, Chelsea Hughes and Kristy Owen helped raise funds and spread the word to feed the community during the winter storm last week. (Cara Caulkin/Instagram)

When city services shut down, four Austin influencers stepped up to bring thousands of free meals to the community.

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