Thursday, November 29, 2012

Red Cross Responding to Fire in Town of Lockport

Red Cross Responding to Fire in Town of Lockport
Disaster Action Team assisting residents of trailer park
BUFFALO, NY, November 29, 2012 – The American Red Cross, Serving Erie & Niagara Counties is currently assisting residents following a trailer park fire this morning. Volunteers from our Disaster Action Team met with the two adults and four children on the scene earlier today to assess their immediate emergency needs.
Red Cross assistance typically includes vouchers for temporary housing, food, clothing, and emotional support for those displaced by the fire. The family is expected to meet with caseworkers in the coming days to work out a longer-term recovery plan.
The Disaster Action Team is a group of specially trained volunteers who respond to the scene of a local disaster when called upon 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. For more information on how to Join Us as a Disaster Action Team member, please call (716) 878-2140 or visit
The American Red Cross, Serving Erie & Niagara Counties spends an average of just over $1,000 when responding to a single house fire affecting a family of four.  To make a financial donation to help this family and others affected by house fires and other disasters down the street, across the country, or around the world, please visit, call 1-800-REDCROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation (charges will appear on your cell phone bill).  

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

More Stories From the Field

There's so many amazing stories happening as part of the Red Cross response to Sandy, and I'm honored and humbled to have been a small part of it. So today, I want to link to a few stories put together by the members of the Public Affairs team that I was honored to be a part of.

I'll start with a photo record of my two weeks in NYC:

Bob Wallace, one of my Public Affairs teammates, caught up with Niagara Falls own Mike Hoplight, and like us, Bob was amazed at everything Mike does for the Red Cross:

I met this gentleman-who's also a judge-a week and a half ago, working on his day off to help those in Brooklyn's Red Hook neighborhood (special thanks to my good friend Alyson Roach for putting the final story together):

This one isn't a link, but Julie Krizen's story of a man we met at a union meeting to inform members of services available to them:
The remains of Michael O'Hanlon's Breezy Point home.
Michael says his wife loves the meals the Red Cross provides.
Michael O'Hanlon was displaced after Superstorm Sandy made landfall and caused a massive fire in his neighborhood. He and his wife had to swim out of his burning home and are now living with relatives. Both have been very thankful for the support they have received from the American Red Cross - especially hot meals at a time when they were needed most. Almost 3 weeks later Michael remains positive and upbeat despite the tears in his eyes. He carries around pictures of what is left of his home but says "I can look at them, but I just can't stare at them. I know I need to sit down and have a big cry, but I just don't have the time for that right now." Michael is just thankful to be able to celebrate Thanksgiving with his family and knows although the road to recovery is a long one, he will be just fine.

Together with the amazing Katie Wilkes-who gave up a vacation in Australia to volunteer with the Red Cross-we met Miss Cynthia, who's passion and dedication is off the charts:

Of course, the Red Cross can't be there for our neighbors in need without the support of the American public. These high schoolers from Ohio made some beautiful music to help those affected by Sandy;

And just in case you're still not impressed by the sacrifices of Red Cross volunteers, check out this Wall Street Journal story on how a hundred or so of them have been living while helping those most affected by Sandy: