Murfreesboro's "Heart of Tennessee" chapter of the American Red Cross is dramatically involved in helping Isaac victims.
Volunteers from the Murfreesboro chapter who are already in place include Audrey Jacobs who was re-assigned from Pensacola, FL to Hattiesburg, MS. Charles “Drex” Freeman, James Goodman, Doug Rasbury and Heart of Tennessee Chapter - Emergency Services Director, Brian Toll are serving in the Memphis staging area. Judy Blackburn has been deployed to Orange, Texas to a volunteer staging area and is awaiting further deployment.
The Red Cross has launched a large disaster response effort that could last for weeks, affecting multiple states along the Gulf of Mexico. As the remains of Tropical Storm Isaac continue to creep slowly North, affecting millions of lives with strong winds, heavy rain, flooding and coastal surges, the Red Cross in Tennessee is working to respond.
As part of the response, the Red Cross:
- · Opened 77 shelters on Wednesday night and assisted more than 4,000 beneficiaries
- · Deployed 3,500 disaster response volunteers, supported with 500 laptops and 800 cell phones
- · Positioned 213 Emergency Response Vehicles (ERVs), which constitutes two-thirds of our U.S., fleet, to distribute hot meals and relief items along the Gulf coast;
- · Deployed Emergency Communication Response Vehicles to provide technology infrastructure for response, as 20% of cell towers are out of service in Louisiana.
- · Moved eight drop trailers with critical resources strategically through the impacted area
- · Served approximately 30,000 meals and snacks, with the ability to deliver 300,000 ready to eat meals
The Red Cross has sent nearly 200 volunteers from across the country and 13 from right here in Tennessee, to Memphis to help operate a staging area. American Red Cross partner FedEx has graciously allowed one of their facilities to be used for this function and will support Red Cross staff and volunteers assisting with distribution. The staging area will contain relief supplies such as cleanup and personal hygiene items, cots, blankets, coolers, shovels, rakes, tarps, gloves and masks that will then be transported down to major affected communities all along the Gulf Coast.
HOW TO FIND RED CROSS SHELTERS People who have been forced to evacuate can find out where Red Cross shelters are open by going to www.redcross.org or accessing the free Red Cross phone app. Both are refreshed with updated information every 30 minutes. Residents can also monitor local media—radio, newspaper and television—to find out where local shelters are located.
REGISTER ON SAFE AND WELL The Red Cross Safe and Well website is also available. People affected by the storm can access the site and let loved ones know where they are. There are several ways to register on Safe and Well, or search for a loved one. From a computer, visit redcross.org; from a smart phone, visit www.redcross.org/safeandwell or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to be connected with one’s local Red Cross chapter.
How Can YOU Help?
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, call 1-800-RED-CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Contributions may also be sent to your local American Red Cross chapter. Your gift enables us to provide safe refuge in our shelters, feed those who have had to leave their homes, and offer comfort to those touched by disaster across the country and around the world.
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.