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Spotlight on Disaster Giving: Stories of Hope

Shelter

Every year, the victims of nearly 70,000 disasters rely on the American Red Cross for immediate help. This undertaking in communities across the country is supported by the generosity of donors who help provide basic necessities for families. This includes shelter, hot meals, blankets, emergency gift cards, infant care supplies and more.

Learn more about families who have faced devastating disasters and how you can help the Red Cross prepare for the future with the stories below.

Eldin and Audrey Myer, married 53 years and lifelong Colorado residents, lost their home in the devastating flood waters in Evans, Colorado. They found themselves in one of many shelters opened across Colorado as safe place for people to stay along with blankets, cots, food, comfort and emotional support.

“We got taken out on a boat – the water was over our fence,” Eldin recalled. They watched their home become surrounded by a wall of water as they left.

“We have lost everything including our pets, we just had no time to get anything except Eldin’s cane and my purse,” Audrey said. “When you have lost everything, it is so great to come to the Red Cross shelter. There is a nurse, personal items, shampoo and toiletries. We are so grateful.”

Give a full day of emergency shelter, hot meals, or blankets to families like the Myers.

On January 17, 2012, at 8:30 AM, Angelina’s four-bedroom apartment in Bushwick, New York, caught on fire. At the time, Angelina was four months pregnant with her second daughter. The Red Cross was there for her with shoes, warm clothes and a voucher for the essentials. Most importantly, they helped her find a place to stay so the family could be together.

When a family's home burns, they often lose everything they own. Providing a gift card will put help in the hands of a family impacted by disasters. The card can be used immediately to replace clothes and food, or even pay for a hotel room for the night.

Help provide families like Angelina’s with emergency gift cards.

Homeless and heartbroken over the loss of her home in Colorado’s Black Forest Fire, Brooke Ash found herself holding her six-month-old daughter Lilianna at disaster assistance center.

Brooke fled her home with only the clothes on her back and Lilianna in her arms. She spent a few days of turmoil crisscrossing the town, staying with different friends.

Pam Robinson, RN has been hailed as an angel by Black Forest residents, but she is just doing what comes natural as a Red Cross nurse. Through her network of partnering agencies, Robinson found Ash and her baby a place to stay. She also found infant supplies like formula, diapers and pacifiers for the young mother. When disaster strikes, parents can lose everything—including items needed to keep their babies healthy in the aftermath.

“I’m so touched by her kindness,” said Ash. “I wasn’t looking for her, but she found me. An angel found me.”

Help emergency shelters stock infant care supplies infant needed in times of crisis, like formula, diapers and more.

This holiday season and throughout the year, you can always give help where it's needed most – a gift of any size to the Red Cross will save the day when the next emergency strikes. Your gift supports the many urgent needs of the Red Cross mission and helps where it’s needed most.

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 cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

Donate Now

Support all the urgent humanitarian needs of the American Red Cross.

$10.00 is the minimum online donation amount. All donations are tax deductible.