Blizzard of 2013 forces families from homes

red cross boston responds to winter storm february 2013
“The Red Cross has been great. Like, wonderful,” Sharese Perry said. “We’re so blessed to have you guys helping us.”

We don’t know when disaster will strike. But when it does, the Red Cross will be there.

The Red Cross was there for Sharese Perry. She’s a young woman living in Eastern Massachusetts taking care of four children under 12. One was visiting grandma in Boston when the Blizzard of 2013 struck Friday.

They were ready for the storm. Until the power went out. She thought they’d just hunker down, but then it got cold. And Sharese felt helpless, watching her children in coats and blankets sitting at the table, watching their own breath come out in the cold.

Saturday help came in the form of the police South Shore residents were brought to a warming center, where at least it was warm, and they were able to lay down on mats for the night.

Finally the Perry family was brought to the Red Cross shelter: And beds, blankets, juice, pizza and chips. And a place for the kids to run around. And best of all? It was warm.

“The Red Cross has been great. Like, wonderful,” Sharese said. “We’re so blessed to have you guys helping us.”

But don’t think Perry is just a victim of a storm. In the Fall River shelter where the Perry family landed, Sharese’s children were busy involved in games and Sharese herself was taking on the task of cooking all the vegetables for Sunday’s dinner. At the shelter. For fifty people.

“Of course,” she said. “It needs to get done, I’m ready to help.”

The American Red Cross has already provided more than 1,300 shelter stays to those affected by the storm – most of them forced out of their homes by power outages.

As of Sunday evening the Red Cross had provided 2,961 meals and 1,433 snacks in shelters on Cape Cod, the Islands, and the South Shore of Massachusetts.

Sharese is jumping in and is ready to help. Can you? Find out how to volunteer at RedCross.Org and 1-800-RedCross to learn how to volunteer or donate.