By Eric Alves, Regional Communications Specialist, American Red Cross on Northern Ohio
May 11, 2020- Over the weekend, Northern Ohio residents were finding new and creative ways to show their love and appreciation to the mothers they know, while adhering to social distancing to ensure everyone’s safety from COVID-19.
While many were celebrating mothers, unfortunately some were experiencing the worst days of their lives due to a local disaster and the Northern Ohio Region Disaster Action Team was there to provide support and assistance because emergencies don’t take breaks.
During the weekend of May 8-10, the Red Cross of Northern Ohio assisted 34 individuals and provided $8,995 in immediate financial assistance.
To date, the Northern Ohio Region has responded to 996 emergencies, assisted more than 4,300 individuals and have provided $838,790 in immediate financial assistance.
Safety for Red Cross Disaster Action Team members and the residents we assist is our number one priority. While our workers can no longer hug people due to social distancing, it does not mean the renowned comfort the Red Cross is known for has to stop.
The Red Cross has come up with new ways to deliver the much-needed assistance to those who are experiencing the worst day of their lives:
- We have screening questions that we ask residents before we respond, to protect our volunteers and those we assist.
- We can conduct interviews over the phone, to ensure that we have a timely response in order to meet their needs and get them assistance in the form of shelter, food, clothing, disaster health services or disaster mental health services.
- We have the capability to conduct video interviews, so the resident sees the smile, and the helping demeanor of our volunteers.
- We have developed ways to deliver cards loaded with financial assistance to a location of the resident’s choosing, always with the safety and health of our volunteer and those in need of assistance at the forefront.
- We also have volunteer caseworkers who will work with residents on the phone to connect them with community partners.
The Red Cross is looking for individuals to join the disaster action team to continue to respond to disasters in local communities. We also have a wide variety of important volunteer-from-home opportunities available. Find your opportunity to make a positive impact today by visiting redcross.org/volunteer.