Whew! What a start to Hurricane season in the south. Regular postings of stamping and scrapbooking will resume shortly; the needs of those displaced from their homes due to Hurricane Gustav and planning for Hurricanes Hanna and Ike have occupied my attention for the last several days.
I'm a disaster relief volunteer with the American Red Cross and my part in meeting relief needs is small. The Red Cross chapter I volunteer with is the Metro Atlanta Chapter. CEO Tim English today issued the following update…please read it and if you are able to do so, consider donating to the Red Cross. As an independent, non-governmental agency supported solely by donations, the extreme disaster needs since Hurricane Katrina threaten the ability of the Red Cross to continue to serve the American people at the level they need and deserve. Each one of you really CAN make a difference by donating now.
Tim English says…
"As you know, during the past week nearly two million residents of Louisiana evacuated their homes to escape the wrath of Hurricane Gustav. While the hurricane did not have devastating effects on New Orleans as predicted, it left a trail of destruction across Louisiana, Mississippi, and the Florida Panhandle. The Red Cross opened more than 500 shelters across the country to provide a safe haven for evacuees, mobilized more than 6,000 Red Cross disaster relief workers, and delivered nearly half a million meals.
"Here in Georgia, the Red Cross has sheltered approximately 1,000 evacuees in eight locations across the state. We’ve served 4,841 meals, distributed 1,098 comfort kits, and provided much-needed emotional support. And, of course, as these families return home, the Red Cross will once again be ready to help them meet their emergency needs.
"Meanwhile, Georgia’s Red Cross pre-positioned equipment, supplies, and disaster workers in preparation for Tropical Storm Hanna, which, fortunately, no longer appears to be a major threat to our state. However, we are closely monitoring Tropical Storm Ike, which could become a major hurricane threatening the East Coast next week. Shelters are on alert to open for potential evacuees in four states – Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
"We are now at the midway point of the hurricane season (the season runs through November 30) and it is shaping up to be one of the most catastrophic on record. The Red Cross projects that the cost of the 2008 Hurricane Season is already between $25 and 30 million. We need our community to come together to help fund the massive cost of this relief operation.
"Would you make a special gift today in support of the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund? Your donation will be put to work immediately to operate shelters, provide meals for evacuees, and buy items such as cots, blankets, and toiletries."
Click here to make a secure, online donation.
In addition to sheltering evacuees from Hurricane Gustav, Metro Atlanta Chapter volunteers responded to nine fires in seven counties over the Labor Day weekend, helping 97 people meet their emergency needs.