CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - American Red Cross chapters, including the one in Cleveland, is already assisting hurricane survivors in Florida.
“We have seven folks that we have on the ground. We’re in the process of getting more folks down there. We’re working through that. Their most immediate concern is always mass care, which is feeding and sheltering those people,” said Tim O’Toole, regional disaster officer with the Red Cross. “Those in the areas, Florida and such, they have evacuation centers. Once that hurricane is through, which is it is at this point, those will convert into congregate sheltering. So, they’ll relocate from those evacuation sites into areas that are more heavily damaged and actually reestablish new shelters in new locations.”
Mike Parks, CEO of the Northeast Ohio Region of the Red Cross, said support from the public is critical in providing services.
“It’s a devastating storm (Hurricane Michael) and we’re really concerned about the loss of life,” Parks said. “We send people, supplies, equipment, our vehicles and the treasure from Northeast Ohio to help those people. You can’t meet the mission without the margin- without making that financial contribution. We actually only exist on the generosity of our donors. Another thing people can do is they can give blood. Obviously, a lot of blood drives have been canceled because of this weather. We have a national blood network here and we supply almost 40 percent of the nation’s blood supply.”
Monetary donations can be made several ways including online.