Hurricane Sandy moves over the eastern US.
Hurricane Sandy moves over the eastern US.

REPORT FROM THE RED CROSS – Two additional Oahu volunteers have been deployed to assist with the Superstorm Sandy response efforts.  One will be going to New Jersey to assist with the Red Cross Family Reunification efforts and one to West Virginia to help with crisis counseling.  This brings the total number of Hawaii Red Cross volunteers deployed to 12.

The Red Cross Safe and Well website is a secure and easy-to-use online tool that helps families connect during emergencies (www.redcross.org). Those in the affected areas can register their current status, and their families and loved ones can search for them and find out how to best reconnect with them.  It helps provide displaced families with relief and comfort during a stressful time.

Besides food, shelter and clothing, the Red Cross also provides crisis counseling by responding to emotional needs of people affected by disaster. This includes members of the affected community as well as other Red Cross workers experiencing the stress of disaster response.  Using professional knowledge and skills, our volunteers provide approved disaster mental health interventions that focus on basic care, support and comfort of individuals experiencing disaster-related stress.

“We are so proud of and grateful to our local volunteers who will be joining other Red Cross volunteers and emergency responders to help those affected by Sandy,” said Coralie Chun Matayoshi, CEO, American Red Cross, Hawaii State Chapter.   “Hawaii has always been generous during times of disasters and this response effort is huge. Please donate so that we can help those in need.”

The Red Cross is providing aid and comfort to thousands and has large relief operations underway in New York and New Jersey, where residents felt Sandy’s biggest impact. Shelters and feeding sites are open and emergency vehicles are distributing food, water and relief supplies in these states.

As the Red Cross learns about neighborhoods in need, plans are immediately put in place to provide people with food, water and relief supplies.  This is a challenging time for everyone who has been affected by the storm and the Red Cross is doing everything possible to get help to them as quickly as possible.

Nearly 6,800 people spent Thursday night in almost 100 Red Cross shelters in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maryland, West Virginia and Ohio. Thousands more are in their homes without power, water or heat. More than 3,800 Red Cross disaster workers are operating shelters, distributing food and relief supplies in affected communities and providing health services and emotional support.

The Red Cross has:

  • Deployed 12 mobile kitchens capable of making 198,000 meals a day and shipped more than 852,000 ready-to-eat meals to the area. Almost 215,000 meals have been served so far.
  • Activated more than two-thirds of the entire Red Cross fleet of response vehicles, which are beginning to distribute meals, water, snacks and relief supplies in neighborhoods.
  • Mobilized 60 trailers loaded with relief supplies such as personal hygiene items, clean-up kits, rakes, shovels, tarps, dust masks and work gloves
  • Deployed specialized workers who have already provided more than 5,000 health services and emotional support contacts to people affected by Sandy.

HOW TO HELP

  • To donate, visit www.redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
  • Your gift enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance to those affected.
  • Contributions may also be sent to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013 or to the American Red Cross – Hawaii State Chapter, 4155 Diamond Head Road, Honolulu, HI  96816.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.

 

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