In 2015, the American Red Cross helped hundreds of thousands of people impacted by disasters, both here at home and around the globe. Red Cross disaster workers responded to 176 large U.S. disasters – more than each of the past three years.
“Whether a disaster affects just one family or thousands of families, the Red Cross is committed to helping people get back on their feet as quickly as possible,” said Judge Renée Cardwell Hughes, (Ret.), CEO, Eastern Pennsylvania Region of the American Red Cross. “Our volunteers are always there for our community, whether the disaster is large or small. To do that, we need your support, now, to continue providing help to families affected by disasters.”
In addition to the 176 large national disasters, over the past year, the Eastern Pennsylvania Region responded to approximately 1,300 disasters across 17 counties, assisting more than 1,830 families, and more than 5,300 total people impacted by disaster.
“While tornadoes, floods and hurricanes tend to dominate the headlines, people don’t realize the frequency of and the devastation caused by home fires,” said Hughes. “It is when families are at their most vulnerable that the Red Cross steps in. Our work doesn’t end after the smoke clears. It begins with local volunteers who are helping people recover and to get better prepared for when the next disaster strikes.”
The amazing men and women who volunteer and work for the American Red Cross Eastern Pennsylvania region support national disasters in addition to the nightly fires in our communities.
“We do this while also supporting large community events, for example; we deployed approximately 1000 volunteers and staff to support the historic visit of Pope Francis in September,” said Hughes.
Across the country, the Red Cross provided more than 34,000 overnight shelter stays to people forced from their homes because of disasters, served more than 1.1 million meals and snacks and distributed more than 800,000 relief items this year (as of December 8). Red Cross caseworkers provided recovery support to more than 19,000 households, and health and mental health workers provided more than 65,000 consultations after disasters.
As part of the world’s largest humanitarian network, the American Red Cross also worked alongside other Red Cross and Red Crescent societies to support families in Nepal after the devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake there in April. Across the world, the Red Cross continues to address the needs of displaced families from Burundi, people facing food insecurity in Senegal, and is assisting with the ongoing migration crisis in Europe.
HOW YOU CAN HELP The Red Cross depends on the generous support of the American public to assist people affected by disasters. If you would like to help, please consider making a donation today 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. Contributions may also be sent to your local Red Cross chapter.
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 visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.