REPORT FROM THE RED CROSS – Thirty (30) local volunteers remain on standby to deploy to the Gulf Coast to assist in the American Red Cross Isaac relief operation. Thirteen (13) Hawaii Red Cross volunteers from Oahu, Maui and the Big Island deployed last night and today to pre-position in Texas so that they can get to affected areas more quickly once the storm has passed. Most will be assigned to work at emergency shelters. Michele Liberty, Maui County Director, is one of the local Red Crossers there and said, “The Hawaii volunteers have arrived in Houston and we are standing by and ready to be deployed where help is needed.” More Hawaii Red Cross volunteers are expected to be sent to the Gulf Coast over the next few days.
Hurricane Isaac is hammering communities along the Gulf Coast and the Red Cross is responding across multiple states – providing thousands of people with a safe, dry place to stay and something to eat. The Red Cross is focused now on people’s emergency needs – last night more than 5,200 people stayed in as many as 80 Red Cross or community shelters in 6 states and we expect many more people coming to shelters today.
This is a very large relief response that will last a long time and is estimated to cost millions. The Red Cross will be there for weeks helping people recover, and after a difficult summer of responding to wildfires, power outages and floods, Red Cross resources are stretched. People can click or text to donate by visiting www.redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
Coralie Matayoshi, Chief Executive Officer of the Hawaii State Chapter said, “Having Hawaii volunteers travel to disasters on the mainland will provide them with valuable experience to bring back to our State so that when, not if, the next major disaster strikes Hawaii, we will be better prepared.”
The Red Cross has more volunteers, equipment and supplies poised ready to help people in the affected areas after the storm passes.
- About 2,700 trained Red Cross disaster workers from all over the United States have deployed to the Gulf region to help.
- We have 311,000 ready-to-eat meals and kitchen support trailers in the area. In addition, the Southern Baptist Convention has mobile kitchens capable of producing thousands of meals a day prepositioned alongside the Red Cross.
- Across the Gulf Coast, 187 Red Cross emergency response vehicles are ready to move in to serve meals and distribute relief items once it’s safe to do so.
- The Red Cross already has trailers of relief supplies pre-positioned in the area and has sent thousands of additional supplies like clean up and personal hygiene items, cots, blankets, coolers, shovels, rakes, tarps, gloves and masks.
- We are working closely with local, state and federal officials and community organizations to coordinate this multi-state relief response. Some of these partners include AmeriCorps, Islamic Relief USA, NAACP and the National Baptist Convention USA.
Those affected can let loved ones know they are safe by either downloading the Red Cross Hurricane App and using the “I’m Safe” button to post a message to their social media accounts, or registering on the Red Cross Safe and Well website. The Red Cross Safe and Well website is a secure and easy-to-use online tool that helps families connect during emergencies. To register, visit www.redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767). This site also connects with the Twitter and Facebook accounts of users.
If people need to find a shelter, they can download the Red Cross Hurricane app, visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767), or check in their local state media outlets. The hurricane app can be found in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android by searching for American Red Cross. It also provides important safety information and a toolkit with a flashlight, strobe light and alarm.HOW YOU CAN HELP Tropical Storm Isaac is predicted to trigger a large and prolonged disaster response with major flooding across several states. People can call, click or text to donate by visiting www.redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. They can also send a check to American Red Cross, Hawaii State Chapter, 4155 Diamond Head Road, Honolulu, HI 96816 or call: (808) 739-8109.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.