Over the weekend, tornadoes swept through the Dallas, Texas area, causing substantial damage. Red Cross workers opened shelters for people impacted by the severe weather and are out today helping to assess the damage to determine what other help will be needed.
“Making sure safe shelters are available is always the first priority for the American Red Cross after storms,” said Anita Foster, Chief Communications Officer, Red Cross North Texas Region. “We will provide more services in the coming days such as distributing cleaning to help families begin to sift through their belongings and salvage what they can. Additionally, Red Cross shelter teams will continue to provide safe locations until they’re no longer needed.”
Meanwhile, Red Cross workers have been responding to earlier storms in other states across the South since Christmas Eve.
In Georgia, Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee, more than 180 Red Cross workers are helping families impacted by the earlier severe weather. In Mississippi, hundreds of homes are affected by flooding and possible tornadoes. More than 65 homes in Tennessee were damaged by the severe weather. Widespread damage is reported across Georgia. Both flooding and tornadoes hit the state of Alabama where more than 100 homes are damaged. The severe weather is expected to continue and officials are watching the situation for additional flooding.
Here in Tennessee, 42 Red Cross staff and volunteers have provided over 400 meals and snacks, have distributed 32 comfort kits and have opened 50 cases since December 24.
“I salute the Red Cross disaster volunteers and staff who willingly put family and holiday celebrations aside to respond to multiple disasters throughout the Southeast,” said Anna Trefethen, vice president for the Red Cross Southeast and Caribbean division. “Their actions gave help and hope to those who have been affected by the multiple tornadoes and flooding which began on Christmas Eve, their selfless dedication is truly impressive.”
PLEASE HELP NOW The Red Cross will be helping people in the Southeast for weeks and months to come, at the same time responding to other emergencies, including helping people whose homes are destroyed by fire. The Red Cross responds to nearly 70,000 disasters each year in the United States – and the vast majority of these are home fires.
People can help by donating to Red Cross Disaster Relief to support disasters big and small by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
About the American Red Cross:
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 redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
Photos by Rosemarie Asia and Johnny Hooker