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Red Cross Issues Hurricane Harvey Progress Report


The American Red Cross issued a detailed three-month progress report on its efforts to provide food, water, shelter, relief supplies, health support, financial assistance and other aid to people affected by Hurricane Harvey.

The Red Cross has provided emergency relief to hundreds of thousands of people affected by Hurricane Harvey. The hurricane made landfall on August 25, and affected millions of people across Texas and southwestern Louisiana, dropping more than 50 inches of rain that led to catastrophic flooding. Hundreds of thousands of homes were damaged in Texas alone. Hurricane Harvey caused the worst flooding disaster in U.S. history, inundating community after community with record rainfall and devastation – including the city of Houston.

Thanks to our generous supporters, the Red Cross has raised $493.3 million, including the value of critical donated goods and services to help those affected.

As of November 25, the Red Cross had already spent well over half of the funds raised to date and made commitments to spend in total approximately $311.7 million on emergency relief and recovery efforts for people affected by Hurricane Harvey. We are working on plans for the remaining funds, which will be used to provide and support services for both individual and community long-term recovery for those affected by Harvey.

The following are examples of how donations are being used:

  • Donations pay for the provision and delivery of food, shelter and relief items, accounting for $44.6 million. The Red Cross served more than 4.5 million meals and snacks, provided more than 414,800 overnight stays in shelters, and distributed more than 1.6 million relief items.
  • Donations pay for health and mental health services, accounting for $3.2 million. The Red Cross provided more than 127,000 services to support and care for those affected.
  • Donations pay for immediate financial assistance, accounting for $234.8 million. As of November 25, the Red Cross had authorized $400 each to more than 573,000 severely affected households, totaling more than $229 million in direct financial assistance.
  • Donations pay for individual and community recovery programs, accounting for $1.1 million. The Red Cross is working alongside our community partners to plan for long-term recovery services, such as additional financial assistance for people who need extra help and programs to help the hardest-hit communities rebound and prepare for future disasters. We anticipate that the remaining unspent program dollars ($165.2 million) will also be applied to this category.
  • Donations pay to transport, lodge and feed thousands of trained disaster workers who work in shelters, drive food trucks, hand out relief supplies, replace medications and eyeglasses, provide emotional support and coordinate with local officials.
  • Donations pay for the freight and warehousing expenses that enable the Red Cross to provide cots and blankets for people in shelters, and the hundreds of tractor trailer loads of relief items.
  • Donations pay for the equipment, maintenance and fueling of emergency vehicles that deliver meals and relief items to people in need.
  • Donations also pay for the full-time program staff, disaster information technology, communications and call center infrastructure that make all of this help possible for Hurricane Harvey.
  • Donations also pay for our management, general and fundraising expenses that support our work at its core and are indispensable to running the organization and helping people in need. They include the people and systems to maintain our enterprise-wide computer and telecommunications, HR and payroll systems to support our more than 20,000 employees and nearly 314,000 volunteers, fundraising and communications functions, and other support services across all program lines.
  • Learn more about our Hurricane Harvey response and how donations are helping in our detailed report.

    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 or, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.