Wisconsin Red Cross Helps in Texas, Oklahoma

Texas and Oklahoma are feeling the devastating effects of weeks of heavy rain, tornadoes and flooding and the American Red Cross is there, helping people in the Lone Star State get back on their feet.

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American Red Cross Texas Storm 2015 Response. Click for a full sized image.

The storms have impacted about 35 percent of the state, destroying or damaging thousands of homes. The Red Cross is providing shelter, food, water, relief supplies, health services and emotional support to people in need.

Since early May, hundreds of Red Cross workers, including 33 from Wisconsin, have opened 37 shelters, served more than 34,000 meals and snacks and handed out more than 33,000 relief items and cleaning supplies in Texas. In addition, 40 emergency response vehicles, three from Wisconsin are distributing food and relief items in the affected communities and additional volunteers and vehicles are on alert if needed.

Let’s listen to a few of our volunteers, courtesy of our TV partners:

If you don’t have the time to volunteer, please consider a financial gift.

Red Cross Can Help You Be Prepared for the Next Emergency

Take A Class, Download First Aid App To Help Save Life 

Recent events in Boston and Texas emphasize the importance of knowing what to do when an emergency occurs. Evan as first responders rushed into help at both scenes, much of the initial care to the injured was provided by friends, neighbors and bystanders who were trained in CPR and first aid. Whether the emergency is community-wide and involves numerous injuries, or involves a single individual being hurt at home, it is vital that someone close by knows what to do when such an emergency occurs.

“Getting yourself and your family more prepared for disasters can bring peace of mind during trying times and can help save someone’s life during future emergencies,” said Judy Gregory, Disaster Services Director. “Taking an action like downloading our first aid, taking a first aid class or building a disaster supply kit can help people feel empowered to act when disaster strikes.

The American Red Cross has numerous ways people can get the information and training they need to be able to help when an emergency occurs and urges everyone to be better prepared by taking advantage of training and mobile apps available to teach them what to do when someone needs assistance.

FIRST AID/CPR CLASSES The Red Cross has classes available that emphasize hands-on-learning of First Aid, Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and use of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). The courses teach someone the skills they need to help save a life. Participants learn how to respond to common first aid emergencies, how to respond to cardiac and breathing emergencies in adults and how to use AEDs. There are also options available to learn how to help infants and children. People canregister for these classes at redcross.org/takeaclass or by calling 1-800-REDCROSS.

ONLINE TRAINING Family and household members can learn how to prevent and respond to emergencies by taking the new Red Cross Family First Aid and CPR online,The cost is $30. Family First Aid and CPR teaches you how to:

  • Identify signals of medical emergencies
  • Give appropriate care for common first aid emergencies.
  • Know when to call 9-1-1 and what to do until help arrives for critical cardiac and first aid emergencies.

This course is for people who do not require OSHA-compliant certification. It takes about 2 hours to go through the Adult CPR and First Aid content. Pediatric modules are also available.

DOWNLOAD FIRST AID APP People can also download the free Red Cross First Aid App for iPhone and Android mobile devices which puts simple lifesaving information at someone’s fingertips. Features include step-by-step instructions to guide someone through everyday first aid scenarios, full integration with 9-1-1 to call emergency services from the app and preloaded content to have instant access to information even without device reception or internet connectivity. The app is available in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store by searching for American Red Cross.

American Red Cross Responds Across the Country to Wildfires, Floods and Tornadoes

Dozens of shelters open to support affected residents

WASHINGTON, September 6, 2011 — The American Red Cross provided food and shelter for more than 1,000 people around the country Monday night from multiple disasters, including residents impacted by wildfires in Texas and Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, which left severe weather in its wake over the Labor Day weekend.

In Texas, more than 450 residents spent Monday night in 10 Red Cross shelters as wildfires burned hundreds of homes and forced residents to evacuate. The Red Cross disaster response in Texas now joins multiple other Red Cross operations underway across the U.S. in response to floods, other wildfires and tornadoes.

Tornadoes spawned by remnants of Lee damaged homes and caused evacuations in Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee on Monday, leading the Red Cross to open shelters in all three states. Red Cross shelters were also opened in Louisiana and Mississippi as Lee dumped torrential rain on the Gulf Coast. Heavy rains and extensive flooding are expected to continue as Lee’s remnants expand northeast into the Tennessee Valley and central Appalachian mountains through Tuesday.    

The Red Cross is also continuing to help people impacted by Hurricane Irene. To date, the Red Cross has served more than 1.6 million meals and snacks and provided approximately 58,000 overnight shelter stays since the storm made landfall on August 27. The Red Cross is also distributing supplies to help residents who are cleaning up homes damaged by Irene’s wind, rain and floods. So far, the Red Cross has given out more than 516,000 relief items such as hygiene kits, mops, brooms, tarps, work gloves and coolers.

“Right now our focus is making sure people forced from their homes by floods and wildfires have a safe place to stay and a good meal,” said Charley Shimanski, Red Cross senior vice president of disaster services. “The Red Cross works year-round to be prepared to help people affected by emergencies, and that’s why we’re able to respond to so many disasters at one time.”

The Red Cross currently has disaster relief operations active in more than a dozen states, and current estimates for Red Cross relief for Hurricane Irene alone are from $10 million to $15 million.

Those who want to help can make a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief. This gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for and provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance in response to disasters. Visit www.redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS; you can also text the word “REDCROSS” to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Contributions may also be sent to local American Red Cross chapters or to the American Red Cross,P.O. Box 37243,Washington,DC20013.

 About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.