Press Release: Iowa 6.27.08

Red Cross Combining Shelters

Contact: Disaster Public Affairs, Telephone: (571) 918-5585

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa, Friday, June 27, 2008 – As more flood evacuees find long-term temporary accommodations, the population of American Red Cross evacuation shelters in the Coralville/Iowa City area is dropping. As a result, the remaining residents of a shelter at North West Junior High School in Coralville are moving today to the shelter in Building A at the Johnson County Fairgrounds, 4261 Oakcrest Hill Road SE, Iowa City.

Residents of the area who find they need shelter because of flooding can also go to the fairgrounds location.

Four Red Cross shelters remain open in eastern Iowa:
• University of Northern Iowa, West Gymnasium, 2501 Minnesota St., Cedar Falls
• Viola Gibson Elementary School, 6101 Gibson Drive NE, Cedar Rapids
• Prairie High School, 401 76th Ave., Cedar Rapids
• Johnson County Fairgrounds, 4261 Oakcrest Hill Road SE, Building A, Iowa City

“It’s a good sign for this area, that people who were displaced by the flooding are finding longer-term housing and can move on from the evacuation shelters,” said Bruce Miller, who is in charge of the Red Cross shelter operations in eastern Iowa and the Quad Cities area.

“We were glad to be able to provide so many people with a safe place to stay, but we recognize that a big public shelter is not most people’s idea of home.”

Since the tornado/flooding emergency began in Iowa more than a month ago, the Red Cross and its partner agencies have opened 36 shelters and provided nearly 5,500 overnight stays. Most of the shelters have since closed.

Meanwhile, Red Cross workers continue to meet with flood-impacted residents to provide assistance for their emergency needs. All service delivery sites will be open from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday and from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday at:
• Westdale Mall, 2600 Edgewood Road SW, Cedar Rapids (former Osco’s next to JC Penney)
• Sycamore Plaza, 1600 Sycamore St., Iowa City
• American Red Cross of Quad Cities, 1100 River Drive, Moline, Ill.
• L&M Elementary School, 14506 170th St., Letts
• West Burlington Arnold Junior/Senior High School, 408 W. Van Weiss Blvd., West Burlington

Emergency assistance may include providing the means to pay for groceries, clothing, medicine or
transportation. It may also help cover rent or minor repairs that will help people get back into their homes more quickly. Individuals or families who apply to the Red Cross for assistance must bring some form of identification showing their address, as proof that they lived in the area affected by the disaster.

Disaster victims, who because of age, physical difficulty, or similar reasons cannot come to a Red Cross Service Center, may call 1-866-GET-INFO (438-4636) toll-free to discuss assistance.

Red Cross volunteers will also be handing out clean-up supplies, such as gloves, buckets and bleach from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1-6 p.m. Sunday at:

• Sam’s Shopping Center, 2605 Blairs Ferry Road NE, Cedar Rapids
• Westdale Mall, 2600 Edgewood Road SW, Cedar Rapids
• Sycamore Mall, 1676 Sycamore St., Iowa City
• L&M Elementary School, 14506 170th St., Letts
• Solid Rock Baptist Church, 14041 Locust St., Wapello
• West Burlington Arnold Junior/Senior High School, 408 W. Van Weiss Blvd., West Burlington

The Red Cross will continue to adjust services across Iowa as needs change for shelters, meals, snacks, clean-up supplies, physical and mental health services and individual client assistance.

Red Cross assistance to date in Iowa (as of June 27):
• With its partner organizations, opened 36 shelters with more than 5,490 overnight stays.
• Served 510,000 meals and snacks.
• Opened more than 4,300 emergency assistance cases.
• Sent 48 emergency response vehicles and more than 1,626 Red Cross workers.
• Made more than 9,800 first aid and mental health contacts.
• Distributed more than 25,100 clean-up kits.

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 flooding and thousands of other disasters across the country each year 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 those in need. Call 1-800-HELP NOW 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, DC 20013. Internet users can make a secure online contribution by visiting


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