How the Red Cross is Helping Disaster Victims; How YOU Can Help
Local American Red Cross volunteers providing help following devastation from Hurricane Ida
Additional disaster volunteers are needed
While it will be days before we know the full scope of the damage that Ida left behind in the Gulf Coast, currently 600 some Red Cross volunteers are already in place assisting those impacted—and more volunteers are on the way.
The American Red Cross is there, working side-by-side with our partners to provide shelter and comfort for people in need. Sunday night, more than 2,500 people sought refuge in some 60 Red Cross and community shelters across Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. The number of people seeking shelter is expected to increase in the coming days as power outages continue and people leave homes that are damaged or destroyed by the storm.
The Central & Southern Ohio Region currently has approximately 13 volunteers in Louisiana. Additional volunteers from our region are preparing to leave for the affected areas. An Emergency Response Vehicle (ERV) left our Dayton chapter early yesterday en route to Louisiana. ERVs are typically used for mobile feeding or the distribution of emergency supplies in this type of situation. Another Emergency Response Vehicle will leave from our region midweek.
In addition to the help we are providing in Louisiana, local Red Cross volunteers are also out West assisting those whose homes have been ravaged by the relentless wildfires. Our local volunteers are also in Tennessee helping people recover from the aftermath of that deadly flooding.
SHELTER VOLUNTEERS AND HEALTH PROFESSIONALS NEEDED
Weather experts expect this to be a devastating hurricane season. The Red Cross needs new volunteers to support disaster shelters. Volunteers will help with reception, registration, food distribution, dormitory, information collection and other vital tasks inside disaster shelters.
The Red Cross also needs volunteers who can work in disaster shelters to address people’s health needs and provide hands-on care in alignment with their professional licensure (registered nurse and licensed practical nurse/licensed vocational nurse). Daily observation and health screening for COVID-19-like illness among shelter residents may also be required. We have both associate and supervisory level opportunities available. If you are an RN, LPN, LVN, APRN, NP, EMT, paramedic, MD/DO or PA with a current and unencumbered license, this position could be right for you.
After most disasters this year, the Red Cross plans to open group shelters. However, in some communities, hotels may be more appropriate if the risk of COVID-19, including the delta variant, is particularly high. The Red Cross will also continue many of the safety precautions implemented in 2020, including masks, health screenings, enhanced cleaning procedures and encouraging social distancing.
To volunteer go to redcross.org/volunteertoday. To make a donation to fund our disaster response efforts, please go to redcross.org/donate.