American Red Cross opens third shelter in Georgia
Disaster assessment indicates need in Gwinnett County
ATLANTA, September 28, 2009 – The American Red Cross opened another shelter in Georgia to meet the needs of residents living in Gwinnett County.
Red Cross disaster assessment reports indicated early Monday morning that a shelter in Gwinnett would be necessary.
The Red Cross initially opened seven shelters when flooding in the Southeast began, including one in Gwinnett County, which closed on Wednesday of last week. As of this weekend, two shelters remained open to provide food, mental health counseling and emotional support for residents throughout the affected areas.
“We are constantly looking at the needs of the community,” said Fran O’Shaughnessy, director of operations for the Red Cross response to the Georgia flooding. “Sheltering is a fluid thing during disasters because we adapt as the needs of our clients change.”
The shelters currently open in Georgia are:
o Cobb County
Cobb County Civic Center
548 South Marietta Parkway
Marietta, GA 30060
o Gwinnett County
Zoar United Methodist Church
3895 Zoar Church Road
Snellville, GA 30039
o Cherokee County
Cherokee Recreation and Parks Agency (South Annex)
7545 Main St. Building 200
Woodstock, GA 30188
To date, the American Red Cross has provided 1,643 overnight stays for nearly 500 residents in Georgia Red Cross shelters.
The Red Cross Disaster Call Center has fielded questions and requests for help from more than 2,800 people in our community. Those who have been affected by the flooding who need help can call 404-870-4440.
Thirteen Red Cross disaster assessment teams have been moving through affected areas. Preliminary reports indicate that 2,421 homes in Georgia have been affected; 661 of which are destroyed, 620 with major damage.
Through mobile outreach into flood-affected areas, Red Cross caseworkers are connecting one-on-one with people in need and providing financial assistance for food, clothing, shelter and health-related concerns. Along with providing emotional support, caseworkers can direct clients to recovery resources in the community, including Red Cross Distribution Centers for clean-up supplies (mops, brooms, pails, etc.) and personal hygiene items.
The Red Cross is working with emergency partners in hard-hit communities to establish Distribution Centers for clean-up items and bottled water, which will be replenished throughout the day. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday at the following locations:
o Lawrenceville Fire Dept. Station 20
1801 Curse Road
Lawrenceville, GA 30044
o Best Buy – Douglasville
6875 Douglas Blvd.
Douglasville, GA 30135
o Powder Springs Police Department
4483 Pineview Drive
Powder Springs, GA 30127
o Austell Shopping Center
5875 Love St.
Austell, GA 30168
Since flooding began, the Red Cross:
• Has provided nearly 1,643 overnight shelter stays for about 500 affected residents and has provided more than 20,000 meals
• Has had 426 volunteers and staff from 18 states on the ground in affected areas to support the disaster-caused needs of clients
• Has had 21 Emergency Response Vehicles serving as mobile and fixed site feeding stations
• Has provided more than 28,334 bulk items including bleach, comfort kits, clean-up kits and bottled water.
The U.S. government has declared 17 of the 20 affected counties in Georgia as federal disaster areas – Bartow, Carroll, Catoosa, Chattooga, Cherokee, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fulton, Gwinnett, Heard, Newton, Paulding, Rockdale, Stephens and Walker.