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PRESS CONTACT INFO

ROBIN ERICKSON
Director of Communications

PHONE
(401) 831-7700 x101
E-MAIL
[email protected]

Monday, August 16, 2004
RI RED CROSS REACTS TO HURRICANE CHARLEY
Red Cross disaster teams now on standby to assist in Florida

Hurricane Charley has passed and here in Rhode Island, we sustained only minor flooding with winds well below hurricane force. But our disaster work is far from over. We are currently handling approximately 50 Disaster Welfare Inquiries for Rhode Islanders who have relatives in the devastated area. And more are expected. Our disaster response teams have been put on Alert - the first stage for deployment to Florida. Job specialties are being reviewed as well as availability of our personnel. The next call we will receive will be the Stand By mode -- which means less than 6 hours to deployment.

Many Rhode Islanders have called expressing a desire to travel to Florida to assist. The Red Cross accepts no volunteers that have not been trained to respond in situations such as this. So what can Rhode Islanders do?

  • Cash donations with a note as to the intent of the donation. For example: "To be used for the victims of Hurricane Charley." Donations may be made at the national site: www.redcross.org or by calling 1-800 HELP-NOW. Checks may also be sent to the RI Chapter Office at 105 Gano Street/PO Box 2496, Providence, RI 02906. The Red Cross will be helping tens of thousands to get back on their feet. We receive NO FEDERAL FUNDING - all donations come from the general public.
  • Get trained. We are not disaster proof in Rhode Island and the time WILL COME when we need trained volunteers to handle a similar situation. Contact the American Red Cross of Rhode Island at 401-831-7700 or 401-846-8100 (Aquidneck Island) or email Nick Logothets at [email protected] for training in your own community.
  • Make a plan. Have you taken the time to set up your own family disaster plan? If not, why not? The RI Red Cross will help you do that. Visit www.redcross.org for tips.
  • Build a kit for your own use and include items that you specifically might need.
  • Give blood. The Rhode Island Blood Center is always in need of a solid blood supply and can be reached at 1-800-282-8385.
  • Volunteer. We need help right here in Rhode Island. Each community has at least one shelter that needs to be staffed during a disaster. The training consists of 21 hours - 8 of which are CPR and First Aid. Once you are trained to respond locally, the Red Cross will help you attain National Response status, if that is what you desire.

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