Volunteer disaster responders with the American Red Cross of Chicago & Northern Illinois responded to 24 fires from Monday, January 6 through today in the Chicago & Northern Illinois area in Bolingbrook, Harvey, Lynwood, Joliet, Rockford and more, with 15 of these fires occurring in Chicago including two fires in the 100 block of S. Kilpatrick Ave. and the 5900 block of S. Union Ave. that sadly resulted in the loss of lives.
This past Wednesday, our voluntees also assisted 18 families that were displaced by a fire at a three-story apartment complex in the 22300 block of Piccadilly Ct., in Richton Park, IL. The Red Cross provided assistance with temporary housing, health and mental health services to those impacted. In total, volunteers with
the Red Cross helped 108 individuals, including 76 adults and 32 children with temporary housing, food, clothing and comfort kits with toiletry items, information about recovery services and health and mental health services.
The American Red Cross responds to 3 to 4 home fires every day in Chicago and Northern Illinois. The Red Cross recommends two easy steps to help protect your home and loved ones from a fire: get a smoke alarm and create a fire escape plan. The Red Cross installs FREE smoke alarms year-round. To schedule an appointment to get a free installation in your home, visit www.getasmokealarm.org.
In addition, on Wednesday, January 8, members of the Disaster Action Team provided support to over 90 first responders at the scene of a work incident in Grant Park, IL that sadly resulted in the loss of life. Red Cross volunteers provided food, drinks and hand/foot warmers to emergency personnel.
The American Red Cross currently has a critical need for blood donors of all blood types - specially type O – and platelet donors to make an appointment now to give and help replenish the blood supply. Donors are urged to make an appointment to give now using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1 800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Eco device.
Yet another earthquake hit Puerto Rico over the weekend, causing landslides and damage to homes and businesses on the island which has seen more than 1,000 tremors since late December. The American Red Cross is there, supporting those impacted.
Thousands of people in the southwest part of the island are taking refuge in the government-run shelters which the Red Cross is supporting. Thousands more are staying outdoors for fear of another quake. Most power and water services have been restored. Initial estimates report that about 500 homes have been destroyed or received major damage. The repeated
quakes are traumatic for communities still recovering from Hurricanes Maria and Irma.
About 170 Red Cross disaster workers are providing emotional support in areas of the island where multiple tremors have impacted people. Red Cross workers are also helping with damage assessment, distributing emergency supplies, providing health services and sharing coping and safety information. All of these services are part of the help people need while they begin to plan their next steps. The Red Cross has already:
- Distributed more than 16,000 relief supplies.
- Provided more than 13,100 integrated disaster care services.
- Helped more than 540 people plan their next steps.
You can find more information about earthquake safety here: English/ Spanish.
HOW YOU CAN HELP You can help people affected by disasters like earthquakes and countless other crises by making a donation to support Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
About the American Red Cross of Chicago & Northern Illinois:
The American Red Cross of Chicago & Northern Illinois serves 9.5 million people in 21 counties including Boone, Bureau, Carroll, Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Jo Daviess, LaSalle, Lake, Lee, McHenry, Ogle, Putnam, Stephenson, Whiteside, Will and Winnebago. 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 us at redcross.org/IL/chicago or visit us on Twitter @ChicagoRedCross.