Throughout the past 12 months, the American Red Cross has led recovery efforts in several communities in Oklahoma that were devastated by tornadoes in May of 2013.
One recovery program organized by the Red Cross was a therapeutic card-making event for Moore, Oklahoma, schoolchildren, whose school was directly hit by the May 20 tornado last year while many teachers and students were still inside. When Washington, Illinois, was damaged by a tornado in November of 2013, the Red Cross helped these children from Briarwood Elementary make and send comfort cards to students in Washington.
“It’s very therapeutic for them to feel like they could go and help somebody and they could definitely relate,” stated Briarwood Elementary school principal Dr. Shelley McMillin. “We’ve received a lot of cards from people and it’s meant a lot to them and so to get to sit down and tell about ‘I know what you’re going through’ and ‘It’s going to get better’ and the pictures were just adorable.”
The cards included messages like, “I’m so sorry for everything that you have gone through on November 7. I was in school when the tornado hit my school on May 20. It was the scariest day of my life,” and “Don’t forget that Moore Public School is thinking of you.”
A series of videos helps capture many other Red Cross recovery programs in Oklahoma:
Today, the Red Cross continues to help people and communities recover in Oklahoma — and the work isn’t complete. Trained Red Cross caseworkers are still meeting one-on-one with thousands of people to help them take the next steps in rebuilding their homes and lives.
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.