"Although its track has been unpredictable, what we do know is that there is high risk. High risk for storm surge in vulnerable communities; high risk that coastal communities will have extended power outages. So we've had people on the ground for the last several days ready to make a difference, ready to open shelters and ready to help families post-impact to make sure their needs are met."
Dozens of volunteers from across the country have deployed to Northern New England, eager to provide care and comfort to those impacted by this storm. For some, this is their first deployment. For others, they've seen more disasters than they can count. Their roles are as varied as their backgrounds, from sheltering and mass care to operations, logistics and government relations.
"I'm a registered nurse and have been one for 46 years," said Laura Kling, a long-time Red Cross volunteer who travelled from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Portland earlier this week. "I'm happily retired now, so I am available to help when things like this come up. We [nurses] bring that special piece of compassion and clinical expertise to help people through difficult times."
"I've been with the Red Cross for 30 whole days," said Cheryl Deines, of Peoria, Arizona. She was inspired to join the Red Cross after seeing the organization's response to the devastating wildfires in Maui.