More than two weeks after Hurricane Matthew began its path of destruction, the American Red Cross has served more than a million meals and snacks, and provided 97,000 overnight shelter stays to people in need, prompting the charity to issue a call for the public’s help.
“The effects of Hurricane Matthew are still causing significant flooding in parts of North Carolina and South Carolina. We are here providing food, shelter, relief supplies and other support to help thousands of people whose lives have been upended by this storm,” said Brad Kieserman, Red Cross vice president, Disaster Operations and Logistics. “We’re in the middle of a vast response, and our work is far from over. The Red Cross will be here as long as people need our help.
Two additional Hawaii Red Cross workers are deploying to North Carolina to assist in the Red Cross response to Hurricane Matthew. Maui County Disaster Director, Michele Liberty will be assisting with Staffing and Marcia Allison, a volunteer from Molokai will be assisting with Disaster Mental Health. They join Big Island volunteer, Bill Berg, who is assisting with Logistics, Oahu volunteer, Barbara Dinoff, who is assisting with Staffing, and Cathy Lewis, who is assisting with Sheltering in North Carolina.
In addition, two Big Island volunteers, Neill Bell and Royden Mahi Jr., two Oahu volunteers, Karen Awana and Paulette Didibar, and one Maui volunteer, Michael Hunter are assisting with Sheltering in South Carolina.
In Florida Big Island volunteers, Patrice Johnson, Tony Colombo and Marty Moran are assisting with Health Services, Bulk Distribution and Safety Services, respectively. They are joined by Maui volunteer Patricia Tracy, who is assisting with Sheltering.
Lastly, in Georgia, Oahu volunteer, Candy Iha, is assisting with Health Services.
This brings the total number of Hawaii Red Cross workers deployed for Hurricane Matthew to fifteen.
RED CROSS RESPONSE Preliminary reports indicate more than 12,000 homes across four states have been affected. The Red Cross has deployed more than three-fourths of its emergency vehicle fleet, along with 5,500 disaster workers to provide relief. Working alongside dozens of partners, this help includes:
• Opened 378 Red Cross and community shelters with more than 97,000 overnight stays in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Today, nearly 1,000 people remain in shelters in Florida, North Carolina and South Carolina.
• Served more than 1.1 million meals and snacks with the help of Southern Baptist Disaster Relief, and deployed 25 mobile kitchens.
• Distributed more than 238,000 relief items, including hygiene and cleaning supplies.
• Provided almost 23,000 health services, such as replacing lost medications and eyeglasses and emotional support contacts.
MAKE A DONATION The massive Red Cross relief effort in response to Hurricane Matthew in the U.S. could cost between $24 – $28 million as volunteers continue to help in the weeks ahead while residents recover from the devastation – yet, the Red Cross has raised only $8.1 million in designated donations and pledges for the response to Matthew thus far.
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.