Press Release: Help the Red Cross Help Hurricane Victims

Volunteers urgently needed in Louisiana

ST. ROSE, LA., Sept. 19, 2008 – The American Red Cross needs volunteers immediately to help continue to shelter and feed people displaced by hurricanes Gustav and Ike in southeast Louisiana.

“We have been sheltering, feeding and comforting thousands of people in southeast Louisiana since before Hurricane Gustav plowed into the state nearly three weeks ago,” said Kay Wilkins, chief executive officer of the Southeast Louisiana chapter of the Red Cross, which is providing hurricane relief in 12 parishes in southeastern Louisiana. “We’re committed to serving people who still need us – especially those from areas where the power isn’t expected to be restored until well into next month.

“Many of our disaster volunteers have to turn their attention to their own homes and their jobs, so we need people to step forward to help us continue this relief effort,” Wilkins said.

Volunteers are needed to staff public shelters and to help deliver meals and bulk supplies to areas where residents are just returning to their devastated homes.

The Red Cross trains volunteers and teams them with experienced disaster responders. In addition to a health survey, volunteers age 18 and older must complete a background check that screens for criminal acts or behavior, to protect both Red Crossers and clients.

To join the Red Cross hurricane relief effort, call the Southeast Louisiana chapter’s local volunteer information hotline at 1-800-719-9017.

All American Red Cross disaster assistance is free, made possible by voluntary donations of time and money from the American people. You can help the victims of thousands of disasters across the country each year, disasters like the Hurricanes of 2008, by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, which enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, counseling and other assistance to victims of disaster. The American Red Cross honors donor intent. If you wish to designate your donation to a specific disaster please do so at the time of your donation. Call 1-800-RED CROSS or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish). Contributions to the Disaster Relief Fund may be sent to your local American Red Cross chapter or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC20013. Internet users can make a secure online contribution by visiting http://www.redcross.org.

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