PHOENIX — This year has brought natural disasters across the nation including devastating wildfires and hurricanes. In these times, you can count on the American Red Cross volunteers to be there ready to offer relief.
The Red Cross needs your help as they recruit more volunteers to meet the demand.
After Hurricane Laura blew through Louisiana and Southeast Texas three weeks ago, Dawn Delaney and her fellow Red Cross volunteers helped with the relief efforts.
“Sometimes they didn’t know how they were going to feed their children. We show up in an ERV, short for emergency response vehicle. We have hot meals, snacks and water and you just see relief,” said Delaney.
In three years, Delaney has helped with eight disasters. This one was a little tougher because of the pandemic social distancing prevented her from offering that old fashioned human comfort touch.
“Sometimes they just need a hug and just need to hear, ‘It’s okay. It’s going to be okay,’” said Delaney.
They’re hoping to recruit 7,000 more nationally to help with relief efforts.
“We are anticipating dealing with people who have lost loved ones. Obviously, those who have lost property and maybe even their pets,” said Paul Ellis.
Ellis is heading to Dallas Wednesday morning to help with Hurricane Sally relief efforts as the Disaster Spiritual Care, Regional Advisor for the Red Cross.
“Emotional care. Encouraging people. If they request prayer, we pray with people. Just provide that spiritual counsel and working alongside mental health,” said Ellis.
Delaney says It’s tough work but if you’re interested in volunteering – just do it.
“It’s the best. You’re ever going to feel about yourself and humanity.”
The Red Cross provides all the training you need. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, visit https://www.redcross.org/volunteer/become-a-volunteer.html