Ready When the Time Comes

It Starts with the Desire to Help People in Need

Ready When the Time Comes® (RWTC) is an American Red Cross corporate and community volunteer program.  It is designed to tap into corporate America’s expertise and the desire of community organizations to help people in need.

RWTC volunteer teams from a range of companies were part of the Red Cross response to disasters, such as Home Fires, Floods, Hurricanes and countless other crisis. The Red Cross trains employees from these partnering organizations and mobilizes them as a community-based volunteer force.

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The RWTC program provides a complete system for recruiting, training and activating volunteer teams—placing them in critical support functions during the disaster cycle (prepare, respond and recover).

Depending on the event, volunteers who take part in the program will serve as a team or individually based on their personal schedules. Team members will be able to manage their own schedules and customize their personal volunteer experience. Companies only need to commit to a half-day volunteer training and allow employees to serve as Red Cross volunteers.

Since its launch in 2000, RWTC has trained 14,000 volunteers from more than 460 businesses and organizations. The program has also been established in all critical disaster zones across the country.

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The program allows organizations to give back to the community by empowering employees to act as disaster-relief volunteers during disasters as well as supporting the Red Cross mission through a diverse array of programs and services.

Companies participating in RWTC enjoy the following benefits:

  • An efficient turn-key way to involve your company and your employees in responding to critical local needs
  • Multiple and varied ways for people to be engaged in the community
  • Opportunity for employees to learn new knowledge and skills
  • Visible alignment with one of the most respected organizations in the country

RWTC Engaging in the Home Fire Preparedness Campaign HFPC

The Fire Preparedness Campaign is a nationwide effort by the Red Cross and partners, in collaboration with local fire departments and aligned with existing preparedness initiatives, to convene community coalitions and mobilize resources to save lives and reduce injuries from home fires. Ready When the Time Comes is an ideal partner to engage in this initiative. See below for resources about RWTC and HFPC.

For additional information, email rwtc@redcross.org.

Temporada Veraniega: La Cruz Roja emite medidas para su seguridad y bienestar este verano.

El clima cálido y las actividades bajo el sol están aquí, por lo cual muchas familias planean disfrutar en la playa o la piscina, excursiones familiares o al disfrutar de un asado con amigos y familiares. Su Cruz Roja ofrece estos consejos para su seguridad y bienestar este verano.

Aquatic Attraction Lifeguarding 2014

Millones de personas están haciendo planes para divertirse este verano y la Cruz Roja Americana quiere todos estén contentos, sanos y seguros.

SEGURIDAD ACUATICA

  1. ¡Tome precauciones en el agua! Asegúrese de que todos en la familia saben nadar.
  2. Al disfrutar de la playa, recuerde vigilar y prestar atención constante a los niños.
  3. Identifique y disminuya los riesgos en la piscina: coloque una cerca alrededor de la misma para evitar caídas accidentales. Rodee su piscina o spa por los cuatro lados, usando cercas de cuatro pies, con puertas que se cierren automáticamente.
  4. Asegurese que todos se ponen el chaleco salvavidas siempre que estén dentro de una lancha o bote, o si se encuentra en una situación que exceda su nivel o habilidad para nadar. Los juguetes y brazaletes inflables acuáticos pueden ser divertidos para los niños, pero no sustituyen un chaleco salvavidas o la supervisión de los adultos.
  5. En la playa, procure nadar acompañado y cerca de la torre del salvadavidas; se aconseja que todos, incluso aquellos que se consideran nadadores experimentados, naden acompañados y en áreas protegidas por guardavidas.

 

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Limpie los faros delanteros y enciéndalos al acercarse el anochecer y siempre manténgalos encendidos durante condiciones climáticas inclementes.

SEGURIDAD AL CONDUCIR

  1. Antes de emprender un viaje, asegurese de estar bien descansado y alerta, recuerde ponerse los cinturones de seguridad, observar los límites de velocidad y las normas de tránsito. Limpie los faros delanteros y enciéndalos al acercarse el anochecer, y recuerde mantenerlos encendidos en caso encuentre mal tiempo en el camimo.
  2. Si tiene que conducir, evite consumir bebidas alcoholicas; planee tener un conductor designado.
  3. Preste total atención al camino. Evite distracciones como los teléfonos celulares. Evite textear al condicir. Sea cual sea el mensaje, puede esperar!
  4. Use precaución al pasar por zonas de trabajo, tanto por su seguridad como la de los trabajadores.
  5. Mantenga su distacia; no siga muy de cerca a otros vehiculos.

 

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Asegúrese de que todos, incluso las mascotas, se mantienen alejados de la parrilla (se recomienda mantener un perímetro de por lo menos tres pies de distancia).

SEGURIDAD AL USAR LA PARRILLA

  1. No se aleje de la parrillera, asegurese de manerse atento al usarla. No agregue líquido combustible si el carbón ya esté encendido. Esto podría causar fuertes quemaduras, incendios o accidentes.
  2. Nunca utilice la parrillera en áreas cerradas, en el interior de su casa, apartamento, carpa de campaña o casa mobil.
  3. Asegúrese de que todos, incluso las mascotas, se mantienen alejados de la parrilla (se recomienda mantener un perímetro de por lo menos tres pies de distancia)
  4. Guarde y use la parrillera al aire libre, alejada de su casa, de las plataformas de madera, ramas o cualquier objeto que pueda causar un incendio.
  5. Al cocinar en la parrillera, recuerde utilizar herramientas con mango largo, hechas especialmente para cocinar en la parrila.

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DESCARGUE LAS APLICACIONES GRATUITAS E LA CRUZ ROJA

La aplicación de emergencias “Emergencia – Cruz Roja Americana” puede ser útil para mantener seguros a usted y a sus seres queridos brindándole información vital con más de 35 alertas diferentes de emergencia y condiciones climáticas graves. La aplicación de Nado de la Cruz Roja (Red Cross Swim App) promueve la educación sobre seguridad en el agua y ayuda a los padres y cuidadores de jóvenes que están aprendiendo a nadar. La aplicación Primeros Auxilios de la Cruz Roja brinda acceso instantáneo a información sobre cómo manejar las emergencias de primeros auxilios más comunes. Descargue estas aplicaciones buscando “Cruz Roja Americana” en su tienda de aplicaciones o en redcross.org/apps.

Nuestra Identidad:

La Cruz Roja Americana provee refugio, alimentos y apoyo emocional a los sobrevivientes de un desastre; Recolecta, procesa y distribuye más del 40% del suministro de sangre; Ofrece capacitación y confianza que permiten salvar vidas al actuar ante casos de emergencia; Ofrece socorro en casos de emergencia a las víctimas de desastres y/o conflictos internacionales y ayuda a nuestros soldados y sus familias. La Cruz Roja es una entidad sin fines de lucro que depende de sus voluntarios y la generosidad del pueblo estadunidense para cumplir con su misión. Para información adicional, por favor visite redcross.org o cruzrojaamericana.org o únase a nosotros en Twitter @SFLRedCross

 

Helping Children Cope with Disaster

South Florida Red Cross

Louisiana Floods 2016 March 11, 2016. Monroe, Louisiana. When Terina Smith, Michael Stevenson and their three small children were rescued from floodwaters in Monroe, Louisiana, they found safety at a Red Cross shelter. Volunteer Ethel Payne has helped provide comfort and lifted their spirits during their time at the shelter. Photo by Daniel Cima/American Red Cross

Preparing for disaster helps everyone in the family – including children, accept the fact that disasters do happen, and that together, the family can minimize the emotional distress. When families are prepared, children cope better.

Children can feel very frightened during a disaster and afterwards some children will show temporary changes of behavior.

For most children these changes will be mild, not last long, and diminish with time. However, reminders of what happened could cause upsetting feelings to return and behavior changes to emerge again. Watching scenes of the disaster on television can be distressing for children…

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South Florida Red Cross Volunteers Help Missouri, Arkansas Flood Victims

A team of 10 volunteers from the South Florida region are deployed  in Missouri and Arkansas where some areas remain under floodwaters, providing food and shelter for people impacted by the flooding.

Help and Hope When Needed Most

Volunteer Samantha Chilcore Provides One-On-One assistance to a shelter resident. In Missouri, the Red Cross and partners have already provided shelter for more than 375 people in 15 shelters, distributed more than 10,270 meals and snacks and almost 32,465 relief items (as of May 7). Photo: Marko Kokic/American Red Cross

Almost 100 people are still in 8 shelters in the two states. In Missouri, the Red Cross and partners have already provided shelter for more than 375 people in 15 shelters, distributed more than 10,270 meals and snacks and almost 32,465 relief items (as of May 7). Pallets of water are headed to western Ripley County due to a water restriction there and multiple Multi-Agency Resource Centers (MARCs) are set to open today in various impacted locations where people can get information and help from various resources.

Almost 50 Arkansas residents spent Sunday night in two shelters. Some areas in the northeast part of the state are still inaccessible and Red Cross workers are providing shelter, food, health and mental health services, casework helping with disaster assessment and distributing relief items throughout the affected parts of the state.

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Volunteer Walt Wallheimer loads pallets of water headed to western Ripley County (MO) due to a water restriction there. Multiple Multi-Agency Resource Centers (MARCs) are open in various impacted locations where people can get information and help from various resources.       Photo: Daniel Cima/American Red Cross

The Red Cross is working with local and state officials to ensure people get the help they need. If someone needs to find a shelter, they can visit redcross.org, check the Red Cross Emergency App or call 1-800-768-8048.

In addition to shelters, Red Cross volunteers are providing food and relief items and health and mental health services. In some areas, Red Cross caseworkers are beginning to connect one-on-one with families now to create recovery plans and access additional support.

HOW YOU CAN HELP Hundreds of people across a large part of the country need your help now. Please click, text or call to donate to the Red Cross to help people affected by disasters big and small. Every single donation brings hope to those in need.

Make a donation today by visiting www.redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 gift.

Help people affected by disasters like severe storms and countless other crises by making a donation to support Red Cross Disaster Relief. These gifts enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small.

HOW TO STAY SAFE

DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY APP People should download the free Red Cross Emergency App to receive emergency alerts and information about what to do in case of tornadoes, flooding and other disasters, as well as locations of shelters. The App also includes emergency first aid information and a Family Safe feature which allows people to instantly see if loved ones are okay. The free Emergency App is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps.

FLOODING

  • Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice. When a flood or flash flood warning is issued for your area, head for higher ground and stay there.
  • Stay away from floodwaters.
  • Turn around, don’t drown. If you come upon a flooded road while driving, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
  • Keep children out of the water.
  • Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize flood danger.
  • If evacuated, return only when authorities say it is safe to do so.
  • Continue listening to local news or a NOAA Weather Radio for updated information and instructions.

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 cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @SFLRedCross

Collier County Lifts Evacuation Order Red Cross Shelter Closing at 9:00 PM Tonight

Residents are advised to call FPL for any power issues and Collier County Hotline for other issues.

Naples, FL, Wednesday, March 08, 2017— Community and local American Red Cross volunteers provided care and comfort to families and first responders impacted by the wildfire that swept through areas of Collier County. As of 9:00 P.M. the shelter located at Golden Gate Community Center is closed.

“Red Cross caseworkers will meet with three families who lost their homes to help them create individual recovery plans, navigate paperwork, locate help from other agencies and provide direct financial support as needed,” said Jack Morgan, Interim Executive Director of the Florida’s Southern Gulf Coast Chapter of the Red Cross South Florida Region. “We are grateful for the brave efforts of our first responders and generosity of all residents and volunteers that helped us bring help and hope to the affected families.”

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SAFETY CHECKLIST FOR RESIDENTS WHO ARE RETURNING HOME AFTER A WILDFIRE

  • Use caution when entering burned areas as hazards may still exist, including hot spots, which can flare up without warning.
  • Avoid damaged or fallen power lines, poles and downed wires.
  • Watch for ash pits and mark them for safety—warn family and neighbors to keep clear of ash pits also.
  • Watch animals closely and keep them under your direct control. Hidden embers and hot spots could burn your pets’ paws or hooves.
  • Wet debris down to minimize breathing dust particles and put out any remaining embers.
  • Wear leather gloves, long sleeves and pants, and heavy soled shoes to protect your skin.
  • Do not enter your home until fire officials say it is safe.
  • Follow public health guidance on safe cleanup of fire ash and the safe use of masks.
  • Cleaning products, paint, batteries and damaged fuel containers need to be disposed of properly to avoid risk. Ensure your food and water is safe.
  • Discard any food that has been exposed to heat, smoke or soot.
  • Do not ever use water that you think may be contaminated to wash dishes, brush teeth, prepare food, wash hands, make ice or make baby formula.

DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY APP People should download the free Red Cross Emergency App to receive emergency alerts and information about what to do and how to stay safe during emergencies and other disasters, as well as locations of shelters. The App also includes emergency first aid information and a Family Safe feature which allows people to instantly see if loved ones are okay. The free Emergency App is available at the Google Play and Apple stores by searching for the American Red Cross or at redcross.org/apps.

HOW TO HELP Those who would like to help people affected by disasters like wildfires and countless other crises can make a donation to Red Cross Disaster Relief. People can donate by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. These donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small.

The Red Cross Responds to Major Wildfire in Collier County.

Naples, FL, Tuesday, March 07, 2017— Local American Red Cross volunteers are responding to help families and first responders impacted by the wildfire that is sweeping through areas of Collier County.

“Our first priority is making sure the affected families and individuals have a safe place to go,” said Jack Morgan, Interim Executive Director of the Florida’s Southern Gulf Coast Chapter of the Red Cross South Florida Region. “The Red Cross is helping now and we will continue to be there for as long as necessary.”

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Volunteers are providing meals and hydration to First Responders and residents impacted in Collier County.

A volunteer team of 15 Disaster Specialists have been providing hydration and over 500 meals to as many as 430 first responders and area residents at two reception centers that were opened at Golden Gate Community Center and Eagle Lakes Park. The Red Cross has additional volunteers ready to open additional reception centers, which could be transitioned into overnight shelters where people can find a safe place to stay, food, water, access to basic first aid services and emotional support.

The National Weather Service in Miami, FL informed that a Dense Smoke Advisory has been extended for Collier County through 7:00 a.m. Wednesday morning. The Red Cross is monitoring the situation and coordinating closely with local officials to ensure more help is available if needed. Area residents are encouraged to stay informed and be prepared to evacuate if necessary.

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DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY APP People should download the free Red Cross Emergency App to receive emergency alerts and information about what to do and how to stay safe during wildfires and other disasters, as well as locations of shelters. The App also includes emergency first aid information and a Family Safe feature which allows people to instantly see if loved ones are okay. The free Emergency App is available at the Google Play and Apple stores by searching for the American Red Cross or at redcross.org/apps.

HOW TO HELP Those who would like to help people affected by disasters like wildfires and countless other crises can make a donation to Red Cross Disaster Relief. People can donate by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. These donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small.

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 cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @SFLRedCross.

Safety Steps for Your Football Party as Flu Spreads Across U.S.

As fans across South Florida wait to gather for the biggest football weekend of the year, more and more people are sick with the flu. The American Red Cross says it’s not too late for folks to get their flu vaccine and has steps people can take to help avoid getting sick if watching the big game at a party.

Influenza is now widespread in 37 states and Puerto Rico with all the other states reporting people sick too. This is up from 21 states only two weeks ago. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the 37 states include Alaska, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

STAY HOME One of the most important things you can do is stay home if you are ill or someone in your household is sick. While it’s hard to miss the party, people should act responsibly and stay home to avoid spreading illness.

If someone has the flu, they can infect others a day before symptoms develop and up to five to seven days after they become ill. People with the flu can spread the illness to others as far as six feet away by droplets spread when coughing, sneezing or talking or left on a surface.

WASH YOUR HANDS One of the most important steps to take to avoid getting sick is to wash your hands properly, especially after using the bathroom or when preparing food. For visibly soiled hands:

  • Wash with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds, covering the entire hand including fingernails and under jewelry.
  • Rinse and dry thoroughly with a disposable towel.
  • Use the towel to turn off the faucet.

If using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer:

  • Rub thoroughly over the entire hand, including nail areas and between the fingers.
  • Continue to rub until the product dries.

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PARTY TIPS Other steps to help avoid getting sick include:

  • Hosts should provide a way for people to identify their drinks. People shouldn’t let anyone else drink out of their glass.
  • Give every dish a utensil for serving, including those snack dishes like nuts, pretzels, etc. This allows people to spoon out their portion instead of reaching in with their hands.
  • Do not share food. Avoid anything that involves sticking your hands into a bowlful of food.
  • Hosts should also make sure there is plenty of soap in the bathroom. Instead of the usual pretty hand towel, use disposable hand towels or a roll of paper towels.
  • If you plan to host a party and someone in your household becomes ill, move your event to a different location.

GET YOUR FLU VACCINE It’s not too late to get your flu vaccine now. Everyone six months of age and older should get a yearly flu vaccine to help protect against getting sick. Flu vaccine is available in many locations such as your doctor’s office, pharmacies, grocery stores and health departments. Your vaccine will protect you throughout the current flu season. Several groups of people are at a higher risk for developing the flu, including young children, adults age 65 and older, pregnant women, nursing home residents and people with certain medical conditions such as asthma, heart disease, chronic lung disease and others.

More information about how to help keep you and your loved ones protected from the flu is available on this website and in the free Red Cross First Aid App.

We hope everyone will enjoy the game and stay well.

Ongoing Red Cross Efforts in Wake of Tornadoes and Severe Weather

MIAMI FL. January 26, 2017 – People in several southern states continue to deal with the devastation from severe storms and at least 60 tornadoes over 48 hours last weekend. The American Red Cross is with them, including a team of volunteers from South Florida, providing food, shelter and help with recovery. Red Cross workers will support those affected for as long as help is needed.

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Sharon Rogers and her husband were at home when the storm hit. “The storm took our window out and I thought it was over. Then I heard the trees cracking and that’s when I screamed as the tree came through our home,” says Sharon. Sharon frantically grabbed photos of her grandparents as the tree crashed into her bedroom and the guest room as she moved to the living room to wait out the storm. Sharon and her husband had to crawl through the rubble of what used to be their carport to escape their home. The Red Cross delivered meals in an Emergency Response Vehicle through Sharon’s neighborhood so the family would have something to eat. “They have been good,” Sharon says.

As of January 24, reports indicate more than 1,100 homes have been affected across Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana and Florida. We anticipate this number could increase once all inaccessible areas are accessed. Over 130 people in Georgia and Mississippi are still seeking refuge in 7 Red Cross and community shelters. In Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi, Red Cross and community partners have served over 30,000 meals and snacks, distributed over 8,000 relief items, and provided 900 Health Services and Disaster Mental Health contacts. The American Red Cross has mobilized over 500 workers to help those in need.

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In South Florida, Red Cross volunteers are providing recovery assistance and emotional support to 17 families, composed of 53 people – including 15 children impacted by severe weather that swept through the cities of Doral, Hialeah and Miami Springs early Monday morning.

“We are so grateful for the selfless dedication of our volunteers, our precious donors and incredible community partners. It is thanks to their support that the American Red Cross can bring help when needed most,” said Tina Labellarte, Interim Regional Chief Executive Officer for the American Red Cross South Florida Region. “We are out helping people across the affected communities and will continue to support them as long as we are needed.”

HOW YOU CAN HELP

MAKE A DONATION The Red Cross depends on donations to provide immediate relief. Help people affected by Southern Tornadoes and Storms by visiting redcross.org, calling  1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting the word TORNADO to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from this disaster.

DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY APP More than 2.5 million weather alerts were sent from the Red Cross Emergency and Tornado Apps over the weekend. These alerts help save lives by notifying people so they can gather household members and go to their safe place during severe weather. People can also learn what to do before, during and after severe weather events by downloading Red Cross apps in their app store or at redcross.org/apps.

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 cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @SFLRedCross.

 

Help and hope after a tumultuous weekend of severe weather.

Dozens of tornadoes and severe weather left a path of destruction in areas of Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Arkansas and Florida over the weekend. In addition, southern California has been hit with another storm, bringing heavy rains, increased risk for landslides and leaving thousands without power.

In South Florida, local American Red Cross volunteers responded to help families impacted by severe weather that swept through the 300 block of West 10th street in Hialeah early Monday morning.

“Our first priority is making sure all affected families and individuals have a safe place to go,” said Carlos Castillo, Regional Disaster Officer of the American Red Cross South Florida Region. “The Red Cross is helping now and we will continue to be there as they recover from these storms.”

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The Red Cross brought help and hope by meeting the immediate and essential needs of 13 families, composed of 44 people, coordinating efforts with local authorities to ensure people have a safe place to stay, food, water and resources to begin their recovery. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, volunteers can provide access to safe shelter, food, relief supplies and emotional support due to damage to their residences.

WHAT PEOPLE CAN DO

DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY People should download the free Red Cross Emergency App to receive emergency alerts and information about what to do in case of tornadoes and other disasters, as well as locations of shelters. The App also includes emergency first aid information and a Family Safe feature which allows people to instantly see if loved ones are okay. The free Emergency App is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps.

HOW TO HELP Those who would like to help people affected by disasters like tornadoes and countless other crises can make a donation to Red Cross Disaster Relief. People can donate by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. These donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small.

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 cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @SFLRedCross.