Thank You

July 9, 2008

This is the final post for the Central US Floods and Tornadoes Online Newsroom. While this is the last post, the recovery and relief efforts will continue. We would like to thank the hard working Red Crossers in the field who made this disaster operation, as well as this website, successful. To all those in the affected areas, we wish you a swift and complete recovery.

National media contacts: Please contact (202) 303-5551 for additional public affairs information.

Local media contacts: Please contact your local chapter for additional public affairs information.

For Red Cross assistance or for any other inquiries, please contact 1-800-RED-CROSS.

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Press Release: National 6.20.08

June 20, 2008

Generous Donations Help Replenish American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund

Help still needed as relief efforts continue in Central U.S.

Contact: American Red Cross Public Affairs at (202) 303-5551

Washington, June 20, 2008 – With an estimated cost of at least $15 million for the relief efforts in the Central United States, the American Red Cross continues to seek donations for its Disaster Relief Fund. The relief organization is extremely grateful for the approximately $8 million that has been pledged and received for disaster relief to date from generous donors across the country. This update comes one week after the Red Cross announced that the fund had been depleted. The challenges with the Disaster Relief Fund have not adversely affected the level of service that is being provided.

In response to the extreme weather and flooding, the Red Cross has opened more than 100 shelters and deployed an estimated 3,000 volunteers to help serve nearly 500,000 meals and snacks, and distribute the thousands of clean-up kits to families returning to their flood ravaged homes. As flooding continues along the Mississippi River, the Red Cross encourages those who may be affected by the swelling waters to review the flooding preparedness tips that can be found on http://www.RedCross.org.

The Disaster Relief Fund allows the Red Cross to provide desperately needed immediate emergency assistance to victims of all disasters, small and large. The fund provides for free assistance not only to victims of major disasters like the recent floods, but also to smaller local disasters, like house fires. Since the American Red Cross is not a government agency, it relies on the donations of private individuals and organizations to provide assistance to those affected by disasters.

The best way to help the Red Cross continue to provide food, shelter, counseling and other assistance to victims of disasters is to make a financial contribution to the Disaster Relief Fund. For example, a $25 donation can provide five blankets at an emergency shelter; a $350 donation can provide emergency food and shelter for up to 25 people for one day.

Donors can contribute via the internet at http://www.RedCross.org , by phone at 1-800-HELP-NOW (1-800-435-7669) or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish) or by mail: American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243 , Washington, D.C. 20013. The 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.

Visit www.RedCross.org to find out the latest information and learn how you can help.


Press Release: National

June 13, 2008

AMERICAN RED CROSS ISSUES APPEAL FOR DISASTER RELIEF FUND

Anticipates spending in excess of $15 Million for recent disasters

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: American Red Cross Public Affairs at (202) 303-5551

Washington, June 13, 2008 – The American Red Cross anticipates spending millions as it moves forward with relief efforts for the victims of flooding and tornadoes across seven states, an enormous geographic area. From Kansas to West Virginia, the Red Cross is present with vast amounts of clean up supplies, dozens of shelters and tens of thousands of meals.

Already, more than 1,400 Red Cross workers are assisting people in the affected area, and the organization is gearing up to provide additional relief. The current relief operations follow two extremely busy months for the Red Cross, with 27 disaster operations in April and May. These operations will cost the Red Cross millions of dollars and the help of the American public is needed to meet the growing needs.

“Our first priority in flooding is to provide shelter and food for people in the immediate area until the waters recede and recovery can begin,” said Joe Becker, senior vice president, Disaster Services for the American Red Cross. “But the help we give depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public.”

Over the past days, the Red Cross has responded to tornados in Kansas, and floods in Iowa, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Indiana and West Virginia. Thousands of people are staying in more than 41 shelters and more than 115,000 meals and snacks have been served. This spring, the American Red Cross responded to more than 30 large scale disasters due to severe weather.

The Red Cross is coordinating with local emergency officials, community organizations and faith-based groups to pre-position relief supplies, such as cots, blankets and comfort kits, and is preparing to open additional shelters if needed.

“We are concerned for the more than 500,000 people who live within five miles of this stretch of the Mississippi River as the floods move south,” Becker said. “Red Cross chapters along the river are monitoring the situation, and are prepared to mobilize resources to respond.”

The Red Cross encourages those affected to register their status on the Safe and Well Web site on www.redcross.org so loved ones can know they are safe.

It is anticipated that relief efforts will cost tens of millions of dollars. In order to quickly respond to anyone with disaster-caused needs, the Red Cross must have money available immediately. This emergency resource is provided by the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund.

Visit http://www.redcross.org to find out the latest information and learn how you can help; you can also visit https://redcrossmidwestflooding.wordpress.com/maps/ to view an interactive map for the current Red Cross response.

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and counsels victims of disasters; provides nearly half of the nation’s blood supply; teaches lifesaving skills; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization – not a government agency – and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its humanitarian mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at www.redcrosschat.org.


Severe Weather in Central U.S.

June 9, 2008

Stay tuned to this URL for updates concerning the flooding and tornadoes in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, Oklahoma, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.