Red Cross Continues to Work Locally & Nationally

After Hurricanes Harvey and now Irma, more than 2,000 Red Cross volunteers were sent to Texas and Florida. But, after an apartment fire this past Saturday left several families without a home here in Utica, they're also continuing to work here as well.

"Right now the Red Cross has a lot of robust disaster response capabilities which allows us to respond to Hurricane Harvey as well as local fires," said Mary Walker, a local volunteer. "And that way all the needs are met of people across the United States."

No matter where a disaster happens, Walker says it all comes down to how the volunteers respond.

"They can be part of the disaster action team where we respond to local fires, it can be mass feeding when we have to set up shelters due to disaster," she said.

And for some volunteers, they personally know the work the Red Cross does for those in need. Mary Seibel joined the Red Cross after they helped her a few years ago.

"I had a structure fire in January of 2014 where I lost my whole home and I lost three pets," Seibel said. "The Red Cross was the one organization that was there right from the beginning."

With everything that has been happening locally and nationally, Seibel says the Red Cross works to place all volunteers where they're needed.

"Volunteers that came out when the need was there and now they're volunteering, so we're going to get them where they need to go to help out," she said.

Besides volunteering, one of the best ways the Red Cross says to help is by giving monetary donations. That way, those affected can purchase exactly what they need.

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