Disaster Update: Syria

February 27, 2014

Damascus/Geneva (ICRC) – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent jointly delivered emergency relief to over 4,000 families in Barzeh over the last two days. The 19-truck humanitarian convoy was the first to enter the Rural Damascus district since a truce was brokered there earlier this month.

“The convoy arrived in Barzeh yesterday and delivered medical, food and other items, including kitchen sets, blankets and mattresses, throughout the day to local committees,” said Daphnée Maret, the deputy head of the ICRC delegation in Syria, who oversaw the operation. “ICRC economic security and health specialists had assessed the humanitarian situation in Barzeh last week. This is significant, as it paved the way for the impartial delivery of assistance, including medical relief, in an area directly affected by fighting.”

Local committees and local health personnel will start to distribute the aid provided by the ICRC at several easily accessible distribution points in the district today.


Video Update from Tacloban in the Philippines

February 14, 2014


Disaster Update—Typhoon Haiyan and Reconnecting Families

November 19, 2013

One of the resulting tragedies of disaster is that families can often become separated. In addition to supplying people, expertise, and equipment, the American Red Cross is helping reconnect families separated by Typhoon Haiyan. The International Committee of the Red Cross has now launched a website to assist these families.  Concerned family and friends can search the site to see if their loved one is listed as either “I am alive” or “missing.” They can also choose to list their loved one as “missing.”

The Philippine Red Cross responders are actively gathering information on persons who are safe and well and updating the “I am alive” listings. Families should check the website regularly for updates.

For those who are searching for U.S. citizens missing in the Philippines, the U.S. Department of State, Office of Overseas Citizens Services has an additional resource. Check their Task Force Alert system (https://tfa.state.gov/ccd) or call 1-888-407-4747.


Story: Getting Supplies to Clients in Colorado

September 23, 2013

WAREHOUSE2

By CARL MANNING
To the casual visitor, it looks like a whirlwind of chaos with big trucks backing up to the unloading doors, forklifts zipping around the massive warehouse floor unloading dozens of pallets and then loading them into other vehicles for delivery to area affected by the Colorado flooding.

In recent days, more than 17 truckloads of supplies including personal hygiene items, cleaning supplies, lanterns, tents, sleeping bags, rakes, tarps, gloves, flashlights, colors and insect repellent has arrived.

“We want to get the product out to the client because they are ones who are needing it and they are needing it now,” Bos said.

On a recent day, Bos and his crew were busy loading a truck with blankets, gloves and cleanup kits heading out to one of the flooded areas. He watched to make sure everything was loaded properly and secured for the ride before heading out.

While overseeing the warehouse operation is a big part of his work, Bos feels he has another role to make sure that the money donated to the Red Cross is being used efficiently.

“I don’t see where anything we do shouldn’t be concerned with the donor dollar,” he said. “They are ones who are paying for this and we need to respect that.”

Bos, who retired after an Air Force career, said he is volunteering with the Red Cross because “it’s time to give back to the community.”
It’s a job with long hours and no pay, but Bos said his reward is knowing that what he is doing is helping those in need.

“You can’t put a dollar figure on it,” he said.


Story: Tuscaloosa Tornado to Colorado Flood

September 17, 2013

Caroline and family

 

Caroline McLowhorn, married to Jason Burkart, two daughters Jasmine Burkart 12 and Jo-Jo Burkart 1

Two years ago during the F5 Tuscaloosa Alabama tornadoes, Caroline thought she’d see it all.  Three of her friends died in the tornado, and she wanted to start a new chapter for her family.

Her husband Jason came out to Longmont first.  He found a beautiful community and plenty of work, so last week he called his wife and kids to make the journey.  Two months pregnant with two kids in the car, Caroline made the cross country trip to rejoin her husband.  She had to stop at hospitals in Kansas and Colorado due to a pelvic infection, but she eventually made it…just a few short days before the flood.

When her husband’s apartment got flooded, they moved into a hotel, but after six days, their bank account was empty, so they turned to the Red Cross shelter for food, housing, and support.  Jasmine made fast friends with the other young girls in the shelter, and everyone doted on Jo-Jo.

Late Monday night, they were able to find temporary housing free for the next two weeks.  Every pregnant mother deserves her own bed and a little privacy, so while we’ll miss our new friends, we’re always glad when our shelter residents find a new home.


Reunification in Colorado

September 16, 2013

The American Red Cross is staffing the reunification center for Colorado residents (and animals) who were evacuated from their homes today.


VIDEO: Lucero

September 16, 2013


PHOTO: ERVs Ready to Distribute Supplies

July 5, 2013
ERVs
The American Red Cross will have 25 Emergency Response Vehicles in the areas affected by the Yarnell fire to help distribute food, water, and supplies to residents once they are allowed back home. 
 
 
Courtesy:
Dave Schrader

Story: The Ziperer Family

July 4, 2013

Arizona Wildfires 2013

 

For four-year-old Nicolas Zipperer and his little sister, Salma, moving into the gymnasium at Yavapai Community College is an adventure. There are other youngsters to play with, toys they haven’t seen before, even a stuffed animal for each child.

But for their mother, Mary, evacuation to an American Red Cross shelter is a mixed blessing. She’s profoundly grateful for a safe place to stay, but anxious about what faces her family when the Yarnell Hill wildfire is finally tamed.

While most of her neighbors in Peeple’s Valley, Ariz., went to stay with family or friends when the authorities told them they had to evacuate, “We’ve only lived her six months. We don’t know anybody here,” Mary said.

While her husband goes to work each day, Mary looks after Nic, Salma and their six-month-old baby sister as well as her husband’s uncle, whose medical condition is aggravated by smoke thrown up by the massive fire.

She clings to her faith that their home will be spared. But in the meantime, she appreciates that her children are happily unaware of the fire and that Red Cross volunteers are on hand to cheer her.


Story: The Carter Family

July 4, 2013

When the Carter family of Peeple’s Valley, Ariz., had to abandon their home in the face of the Yarnell Hill wildfire, they took what was most precious with them: eight dogs and two cats.

The entire household has found refuge at Yavapai Community College in Prescott, where the American Red Cross and Animal Disaster Services have teamed up to run side-by-side shelters for humans and pets. For more than 10 years, the partnership has been key to getting pet-lovers to leave home when necessary, because they know their animals will be welcome and well cared for right next door to where they are sheltering.

The Carter family initially went to stay with a friend in Yarnell, but when raging flames threatened that community, they had just half an hour to flee. Sheriff’s deputies directed them to the Red Cross shelter, where there would also be food, water and the compassion of caring volunteers.

Even as she hopes and prays that her home will be spared, Wendie Carter takes comfort in cradling her little furry pup, Pikachu. “He’s my kid,” she says fondly.

“The Red Cross folks make you feel at home,” Carter said, “even when you don’t know if you have a home to go back to.”

Meanwhile, three grandsons and a granddaughter make sure Hunter, Poppy and Cadden get plenty of exercise and affection. Latere, they’ll turn their attention to the four puppies and to the cats.

“People won’t leave their pets behind,” Carter said firmly. “This set-up is great. It’s good for the animals and it’s good for the people.”


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