By: Doyle Rader
2022 was a year that found many Americans in crisis thanks to an unforeseen disaster. The American Red Cross responded to 15 billion-dollar disasters that upended lives across the country, including hurricanes Fiona and Ian, flooding in Kentucky and Missouri, tornadoes in the South and wildfires in the West, among others. That is more than twice the number of billion-dollar disasters that struck annually two decades ago.
Closer to home, hundreds of dedicated Red Cross employees and volunteers responded to emergencies throughout the region — from extreme climate disasters like flooding, tornadoes and wildfires to the first-ever national Red Cross blood crisis in January. Through it all, those volunteers never wavered in their efforts to provide relief and comfort to help ensure no one faces a crisis of any size alone.
“2022 showed the breathtaking compassion and commitment of North Texas Red Cross volunteers, employees and donors, who turned their dedication into meaningful action,” said Megan Dulgar, Interim CEO, Red Cross North Texas Region. “Whether it’s providing comfort to a family displaced by a tornado, delivering lifesaving blood to a patient in need or helping a community prepare for a disaster, the Red Cross has been there.”
Thanks to the resolve of volunteers, the North Texas Region, which includes the Texas Panhandle, Big Country, DFW as well as East and Northeast portions of the state along with Miller County Arkansas, was able to serve almost 10,000 individuals, more than 3,800 households in need, while responding to more than 2,000 disasters in 2022.
This year’s extreme disasters in the region are clear examples of the increasing frequency and intensity of the climate crisis. From January through December, Red Crossers from the North Texas Region responded to extreme flooding in Dallas-Fort Worth, more than 20 tornadoes across multiple counties and 160 wildfires brought on by severe drought.
These climate disasters caused tens of millions of dollars in damage and forced many families to start over with nothing. The Red Cross set up shelters, opened numerous temporary evacuation points, provided countless meals along with partner organizations. Generous donors who take the Red Cross mission to heart helped make all this possible.