As a Nor’easter heads towards the East Coast, the American Red Cross is preparing to respond to this new storm while the massive relief operation to Sandy grows. At this time, the Greater St. Louis Region is sending two more local volunteers to aid in the relief efforts along the East Coast. That brings the total number of regional volunteers to 40, and the total number of emergency response vehicles from this area to five.
These two additional volunteers are from Fenton and Lake St. Louis. They are headed for New Jersey, where they will assist with casework.
“As ‘One Red Cross’, it is so important that we pull together to help the millions of people affected by this massive storm,” said Cindy Erickson, Regional CEO of the Red Cross. “That means sending in additional people and resources from around the country to make sure everyone has a safe place to stay and hot meals to eat.”
As a national organization, the Red Cross is extending its reach into more affected communities every day. Disaster workers are bringing food and relief supplies to the hardest hit areas and sending in an additional 80,000 blankets. While access to many areas remains challenging, an extensive meal operation is underway to get hot meals to residents in New Jersey and all five boroughs of New York, including the hard-hit Staten Island. The Red Cross has fixed meal sites and volunteers are providing mobile distribution of water, meals and snacks in neighborhoods. Shelters are also open where people can escape the cold, receive a hot meal and obtain the latest information on help available to them.
More than 5,300 Red Cross workers from all over the country are supporting shelters, providing food and water at fixed sites, and driving through neighborhoods to distribute meals, water, snacks and supplies. The entire Red Cross fleet of response vehicles– more than 320 total – has been activated.
To date, the Red Cross has helped families and individuals in ten states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico affected by Sandy. The Red Cross has:
HOW TO HELP The response to Sandy is likely to be the biggest Red Cross response in the U.S. in the past five years. Those who want to help can make a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief by visiting www.redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. They can also use the “donate” feature on the free Red Cross Apps for mobile devices to support this relief response. Contributions may also be sent to local Red Cross chapters or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013.
GIVE BLOOD Hundreds of Red Cross blood drives have been cancelled due to the storm, representing a loss of thousands of blood and platelet products. The Red Cross is asking people who are eligible, especially in places not affected by the storm, to schedule a time to give blood in the days and weeks to come. To schedule a donation time or get more information about giving blood, people can visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). To give blood, someone must be at least 17 years of age, meet weight and height requirements and be in general good health. Donors should bring their Red Cross blood donor card or other form of positive ID with them. Some states allow 16-year-olds to give with parental consent.
The American Red Cross Greater St. Louis Region is a proud member agency of the United Way, which makes significant investments every year in Red Cross services.
About the American Red Cross Greater St. Louis Region:
Celebrating 95 years of dedicated service in the region, the American Red Cross prevents and alleviates human suffering in the face of emergencies. Thousands of volunteers and generous donors provide community support services including disaster relief, preparedness efforts, training in lifesaving skills, service to military families and blood services. The Greater St. Louis Region covers St. Louis City, and 72 surrounding counties in Missouri and Illinois. All disaster relief services are free. To learn more about the Red Cross, contact your local Red Cross by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS (733-2767) or visit redcross.org.
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.