The American Red Cross Heart of Texas Chapter and Central Texas Region will commemorate the one-year milestone of the fertilizer plant explosion in West, Texas at a special reception on April 29, 2014 from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm at the Insurors of Texas Building, 225 S. 5th Street, Waco, Texas.
In addition to reflecting on the progress made in West and emphasizing the long term recovery efforts still underway, the reception will include a special presentation from Charles Blake, Division Disaster Executive for the Southwest and Rocky Mountain Division of the American Red Cross, as well as recognition of the partners in the community.
In the weeks immediately following the explosion in West, more than 200 Red Cross disaster workers helped provide shelter, food and comfort to hundreds of families. Workers served nearly 49,000 meals and snacks to residents and first responders, distributed nearly 20,000 comfort and clean-up supplies and provided more than 3,000 health and mental health checks. These services were made possible by the work of hundreds of volunteers and the generosity of valued donors and partners.
In the year since the disaster, the American Red Cross has collaborated with the Long Term Recovery Committee, other non-profits organizations and the community leaders in West to promote recovery and resiliency.
In the fall, the Red Cross announced additional $295,000 for long term recovery. These funds have supported property clean-up, demolition of damaged structures and replacement of household appliances; crisis counseling to mitigate post-traumatic stress and foster long term health; and preparedness initiatives to promote resiliency, including recruitment and training of local disaster response volunteers.
“The people of West have proven to be resilient time and time again, and it has been our honor to serve them with the support of our volunteers, community partners and donors,” said Mark Felton, Executive Director of the American Red Cross Heart of Texas Chapter. “We have stayed with the community over the past year and will continue to be there as recovery efforts forge ahead. We could not do this without the support of an entire community of generous volunteers and donors to empower us to fulfill our mission.”
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.