Area American Red Cross mobilizes for relief

The American Red Cross has launched the largest mobilization of resources in its history for a single natural disaster, providing safe shelter for thousands from the panhandle of Florida to Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Georgia and Texas.

More than 200 Red Cross shelters are housing nearly 40,000 residents who fled Hurricane Katrina's wrath.

"In the past year, the Red Cross spent over $134 million providing relief across the nation," said Caroline Punches, executive director of the Northern Nevada Chapter. "As evidenced by their support of the 2004 Hurricane Relief, Waterfall fire and the tsunami-relief efforts, Nevadans are generous and compassionate people who are ready to help their neighbors in time of need. We sincerely hope they will support this relief effort as well."

Many people in Northern Nevada are worried about their loved ones in the aftermath of Katrina. With widespread power and communications outages and roads under water, it's important to be patient, Punches said.

Power outages and downed phone lines are impacting everyone. The Red Cross has the same problems with communication as the general public. At this time, the Red Cross does not have information on the well being of any individuals.

The Northern Nevada Chapter is recruiting trained volunteers to help those affected. Those who would like to volunteer and are in good health but do not have the training, call the Reno office at (775) 856-1000 and ask about upcoming training.

Two dozen medical support troops of the Nevada Air and Army National Guard are expected to fly to Baton Rouge, La., this afternoon in support of Hurricane Katrina relief operations aboard a Nevada Air Guard C-130.

Troops are being called to active duty under the Emergency Management Assistance Compact.

You Can Help

• To make a financial contribution, call the Northern Nevada Chapter at (775) 856-1000, or send a check to 1190 Corporate Blvd., Reno, NV 89502.

• Make a secure donation online at www.nevada.

• Volunteers are needed for disaster relief.


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