SACRAMENTO, August 11, 2023 —The American Red Cross is on the ground in Hawaii working around the clock to help those affected by the wildfires that caused significant damage and loss of life in the western Maui town of Lahaina. Trained Red Cross disaster workers responded immediately, opening shelters across Maui to provide refuge for thousands of residents and tourists who have been displaced by the fires.
As of today, approximately 240 Red Crossers from Hawaii and across the U.S. are either preparing to leave, en route, or on the ground supporting those affected. Four responders are from the California Gold Country Region, and more local volunteers remain on standby.
“The California Gold Country Region is ready to support on Maui,” said Tony Briggs, Interim CEO of the California Gold Country Region of the Red Cross. “We’re no stranger to disasters here in California, and we are proud to lend our expertise to this evolving response.”
Working with government officials and disaster partners, Red Cross teams are providing evacuees with a safe place to stay, food to eat and emotional support, while also preparing to expand relief efforts if needed. More help is on the way as disaster teams deploy from the other Hawaiian Islands and across the country.
Anyone who has been affected is welcome to stop by a Red Cross shelter to get information, a hot meal, charge their phone, and other essential support. With communications down, people should follow their local officials to locate shelters. If someone has connectivity, they can find open shelters on redcross.org, the free Red Cross Emergency app or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (800-733-2767) and selecting the disaster option.
The Red Cross reminds everyone that it is critical to listen to the advice of local authorities and evacuate immediately if asked to do so. For those who have already evacuated, don’t return home until officials say it is safe to do so. If you or a loved one needs help, reach out through the Disaster Distress Helpline for free 24/7 support by calling 1-800-985-5990 or texting TALKWITHUS to 66746.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
MAKE A DONATION Our first priority is to provide shelter and support to those affected — and financial donations are the quickest and best way to help those who need it most. Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED-CROSS (800-733-2767), or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. The Red Cross is unable to accept in-kind donations of food, clothing or other items from community-organized collections due to the logistical constraints that are often associated with the acceptance of them. Your financial donation to the Red Cross helps provide shelter, meals, relief supplies, emotional support, recovery planning and other assistance during disasters.
About the American Red Cross: The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.