Eight local workers are deploying tomorrow to help with response


The American Red Cross has a huge relief response underway to Sandy, providing people across a number of states with a safe place to stay, food to eat and comfort during this difficult time.

Seven Red Cross volunteers and one employee from Colorado plan to deploy tomorrow to help support the massive Red Cross effort, bringing the total to at least 13 local residents helping with the effort. More volunteers will continue to deploy this week, including two from the Western Slope.

The workers deploying include Liz Siaba, a Jefferson County resident who grew up on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, not far from Battery Park City.

“I still have a very close connection and sentimental feelings about that area,” Liz said. “You hate to see your hometown undergo all of that.”

Liz will be deploying as a shelter worker, flying in to Philadelphia and then being deployed where she is needed; the American Red Cross is helping people across 13 states with safe shelter, food and comfort as part of a huge disaster response to Sandy. More than 9,000 people spent Tuesday night in 171 Red Cross shelters in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia, Vermont, New Hampshire, Indiana, and Ohio.

The Red Cross has already served more than 100,800 meals and snacks and mobilized more than 2,300 disaster workers and almost 200 emergency vehicles so far and more are being deployed.

“This response to Sandy is just getting started. The storm has left devastation in its wake and we will be helping people for weeks to come,” said Patricia Billinger, Communications Director for the Mile High Region, who is also deploying. “This will be very costly and the Red Cross needs help now. We ask everyone to support us as we help people recover from this massive storm.”

Billinger will be deployed to New York to assist with Public Affairs. Through today, at least five Colorado-based volunteers have deployed to assist with the Sandy response. Two volunteers from Western Colorado plan to deploy Friday, and more volunteers may be sent throughout the week.

HOW TO HELP The response to Sandy is very large and very costly and the Red Cross needs the public’s help now. People can make a financial donation by visiting www.redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Contributions may also be sent to someone’s local Red Cross chapter or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013.

FOR MEDIA ONLY: Liz Siaba will be available for in-person interviews at 1 p.m, Thursday, Nov. 1, at Denver International Airport prior to her flight. Please contact her at 303-859-2830. Patricia Billinger will also be available for interviews, but flight schedule has not been determined yet. Contact her at 303-880-4012.

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 join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.