Monday, February 27, 2012

Disasters come in all sizes

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Our thoughts are currently with our friends north of the border, as the Canadian Red Cross is responding to yesterday's derailment of a Via Rail passenger train headed from Niagara Falls to Toronto. Unfortunately, we here in Western New York have some experience with transit disasters, having opened reception centers and provided counsellors following the February 2009 crash of Flight 3407. Three years later, we continue to support the families who lost loved ones that day.

Much like that tragic event in Clarence Center, yesterday's fatal rail accident is receiving a lot of coverage in both the Canadian and local media. On our Facebook page yesterday, however, a fan commented that a fire our volunteers responded to in Buffalo this weekend never made the news. That's often the case with a single family house fire, especially when everyone is fortunate enough to get out safely. However, just because you don't see it in the media doesn't mean that they're any less traumatic for those who suddenly lost everything and may have no place to stay.

The Red Cross is proud to be the organization people turn to in times of need, whether the media is there to tell the story or not. However, as Nettie pointed out in her Facebook comments, we need our volunteers and other supporters in order to perform our mission. Red Cross Month starts on Thursday, so this is a great time to consider joining us so you can be the one helping turn heartbreak into hope the next time a disaster, "large" or "small", hits Western New York.

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