ATLANTA – Monday, Nov. 5, 2018
One month after Hurricane Michael came ashore as the most powerful to hit the U.S in nearly 50 years, the American Red Cross will continue to help residents and communities in Southwest Georgia with emergency needs and recovery next steps.
With communities moving from disaster response to disaster recovery, the last remaining Red Cross shelter in Albany has transitioned back to the 2nd Mt Zion Baptist Church and mobile distribution of food and supplies is no longer necessary. Now, hurricane-impacted residents with emergency needs can continue to work with the Red Cross of Southwest Georgia directly by calling 229-436-4845 or 1-800-RedCross, or visiting the office at 500 Pine Ave., Suite 104, Albany, GA 31701.
“Before, during and after Hurricane Michael, the Red Cross has been there for the people of Georgia, said Andy Brubaker, Executive Director of the Red Cross of Southwest Georgia, whose counties were hardest-hit by the disaster. “We’ll continue to work with our partners in local communities to connect people with the resources they need.”
How the Red Cross Helped
Through casework and outreach, Red Cross volunteers connected hundreds of people like Doretha Dandy, Sylvester, with resources and helped them build a plan for recovery. Dandy her daughter and three grandchildren rode out the storm at home as it damaged her roof and well. Two days later, she moved to the Red Cross shelter in Albany and found a safe place to sleep, food, water and power. There, caseworker Bob Coker also helped Dandy get a tarp installed on her roof, so she could move back home. “You’ve got some sweet people; I feel they’re really concerned about you – from the heart,” a grateful Dandy told the Red Cross.
Preparations for the major disaster relief effort began in Georgia well before Michael hit on October 10th. The Red Cross opened a headquarters in centrally-located Macon and began mobilizing trained workers, staging supplies and working closely with emergency partners around the state to support evacuation needs.
After Michael crossed into southwest Georgia, still a category 2 hurricane, and cut diagonally from Donalsonville (Seminole County) to Augusta (Richmond, County), the Red Cross responded quickly. Headquarters moved to Albany, relocating the workforce to southwest Georgia, the area of greatest impact. Georgia Red Cross volunteers were joined by hundreds from across the country who worked around the clock to feed, shelter and support those impacted.
In response to Hurricane Michael in Georgia, the Red Cross, with the support of community, faith-based and government partners:
· Deployed more than 640 Red Cross disaster workers and 26 Emergency Response Vehicles from across the country
· Opened and/or supported 11 shelters in our state for evacuees and those impacted by the storm.
· Provided 2,844 overnight shelter stays to 847 people.
· Served 204,358 meals and snacks and distributed 7,000 cases of water through our shelters and via mobile outreach in affected communities.
· Distributed more than 80,617 emergency supplies (such as clean-up kits and bleach, tarps, work gloves and trash bags, shovels and rakes, etc.) to 5,252 households.
· Made 8,553 health and mental health contacts in addition to our standard client casework.
· Engaged more than 280 local event-based volunteers in our disaster relief mission in Georgia.
“On behalf of the many people helped, we thank our emergency partners and the Red Cross volunteers who came from all over the country to support Hurricane Michael relief efforts here,” said Virginia Mewborn, director of the Red Cross response in Georgia. “Rest assured, our local team will continue to work with impacted residents and communities to help them get back on their feet.”
How You Can Help
Help people affected by Hurricane Michael by visiting redcross.org, calling 1- 800-RED CROSS or texting the word MICHAEL to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters. The Red Cross honors donor intent. Donors can designate their donation to Hurricane Michael relief efforts by choosing that option when donating on redcross.org or on 1-800-RED CROSS.