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Red Cross and Kennesaw Community Responding to Disaster Needs of Dozens of Families

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ATLANTA, March 13, 2018 – Disaster-stricken families continue to turn to the Red Cross for help following a fire last Saturday, March 10, 2018 at the Budgetel in Kennesaw, an extended stay motel.  Approximately 250 residents, ranging in age from infants to seniors, and their pets became suddenly homeless after flames destroyed half the building. A utility shut-down forced everyone out, many without options for food or lodging.

Working with community partners, Red Cross volunteers provided emergency shelter for those in need on Saturday night. They continue to offer a safe haven and meals for stranded motel residents. Caseworkers are meeting one-on-one with residents at the nearby Ben Robertson Community Center in Kennesaw. They’ve provided emergency assistance, health and emotional support, and recovery resources for 66 families (172 people) so far. The Red Cross is also distributing items generously donated by the community for fire victims. 

“We appreciate all you do”, said Chawn Harris, who helped his parents recover their belongings from the motel today with plastic bins, trash bags and gloves provided by Red Cross volunteer Tim Leonard.  “This has been a hard month for us… We’re working on finding a place to live right now, but this help has been awesome.”

Highlights: Red Cross Disaster Assistance - Budgetel Fire, Kennesaw
(March 10-12, 2018)

·    Provided 124 overnight stays at 2 shelters

·    Served 1,894 meals and snacks

·    Supplied 218 bulk items and 72 comfort kits (containing hygiene items)

During this same timeframe (Saturday through Monday), Red Cross disaster volunteers responded to 5 other home and multi-family fires in metro Atlanta and helped 10 additional families in need of food, clothing and shelter. Across Georgia, Red Cross disaster assistance reached 261 people in 21 counties. Each year, Georgia’s Red Cross responds to more home fires and helps more families following them than any Red Cross region in the country.

Red Cross disaster relief for metro Atlanta families is only possible through the generosity of the community. On Wednesday, March 28 -- Red Cross Giving Day -- financial donations can help provide food, blankets and other essentials for neighbors in need. To find out how you can #help1family, visit