Saturday, November 4, 2017

Notes From the Field

by Melissa Logan, American Red Cross in Greater New York

Greater New York Red Crossers continue to deploy across the US to support residents who are working through what is expected to be a long road to recovery from record-breaking destruction over the past few months. Overall, the Red Cross has provided shelter, meals, and supplies to more people in the last 60 days than in the previous five calendar years combined. Just last week, a major Nor'ester can be added to the list of large-scale emergencies that our Greater NY teams have deployed to. Here's a look back at the work of our volunteers and employees on the ground as told from their own social media accounts.

November 2nd, Daniel Delgado, Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico
Instead of getting some well-deserved rest, Daniel chose to use his day off from volunteering to continue his service to the people of Puerto Rico

November 1st, Nor'ester, Maine 
Earlier this week, a major coastal storm pushed through the northeast blowing high winds through Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, and Connecticut. The high winds in some places topped 90 mph and knocked down power lines and trees that crashed into cars and caused structural damage to homes. It's estimated that 1 million people in the region were left without power. This past week four Red Crossers from Greater New York were deployed to Maine to assist with running shelters that were operating as emergency warming centers. The shelters provided hot meals and showers, phone charging, and other services to residents left without power.

October 31st, Cedric Davoren, Hurricane Harvey, Houston
After a disaster strikes there's usually a long road to recovery, including the effort to clean up. Cedric talks about his experiences supporting and collaborating with local and Federal authorities.

October 29th, Gary Chin, Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico
Gary has been in Puerto Rico since October 16th. Below he's showing the logistical side of what the Red Cross does.

October 26th, Bruce Vesloski, California Wildfires, Sacramento
Bruce drove an Emergency Response Vehicle (ERV) all the way from California to upstate New York!

October 23rd Steven Colon--Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico
Steven went to Puerto Rico to work bulk distribution delivering life-saving supplies to thousands of residents left with no clean water or electricity. Before going to Puerto Rico, Steven deployed to Texas and supported residents there.

October 20th--Doug Bainton, DART Volunteer, Hurricane Maria and the US Virgin Islands.
Doug worked bulk distribution moving emergency relief supplies into difficult to reach areas.

October 18th--Viv Moy, Hurricane Harvey, California Wildfires
Viv first deployed to Texas back in September to assist residents affected by flooding. Now she's in California putting together recovery kits for residents displaced by wildfires. The kits include rakes, eye drops, sifters, garbage bags, hand sanitizer, masks, work gloves, all packed together in a tote bag.

October 14th--Eli Russ, California Wildfires
Eli deployed as a sheltering lead and helped thousands of residents displaced from their homes find comfort and safety.
October 17th--Volunteers, Welcoming Families Displaced from Puerto Rico
Volunteers and staff of the greater New York Red Cross met evacuees displaced from Hurricane Maria that hit Puerto Rico. From October 11th through the 18th families were welcomed at John F. Kennedy International Airport and offered assistance. To further support those affected, the Red Cross of greater New York has partnered with city agencies to set up a service center on Manhattan's upper east side to address the long-term recovery plans of affected residents.

Thx to our volunteers who have been supporting families at JFK returning from Puerto Rico. #HurricaneMaria

September 20th--Alex Ong, Hurricane Irma
Alex first deployed when Hurricane Irma struck. He drove an emergency response vehicle (ERV) to Florida and executed mobile feeding operations. Later he went to Puerto Rico to carry out bulk distribution efforts. At the end of his 2-week tour he was at the volunteer outtake center preparing to come home when he saw dozens of families standing in line waiting to register for shelter. Alex decided to extend his deployment for another week so he could help those families in their time of need.

August 30th--Joe Spaccarelli, Hurricane Harvey
Staff member Joe Speccarelli from Long Island coordinated the deployment of our emergency disaster vehicles (ERVs) from Louisiana to Texas. These large vehicles carry emergency supplies to affected areas. Before the storm hit the Red Cross coordinated around 200 ERVs in the region that drove out to people in need of food and water. Here is a picture of ERV teams getting a briefing and training before they head out.
August 29th--Elizabeth Barker, Hurricane Harvey
Elizabeth Barker of Long Island relayed critical information about where people could find shelter and communicated how the Red Cross is assisting residents. She was also out in the field at a shelter in Dallas connecting with other organizations involved with the response and recovery effort.
— Elizabeth Barker (@LizBarkerNY) August 29, 2017

August 27th--FDNY DART TEAM, Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Jose and Maria
At the onset of Hurricane Harvey, active and retired New York City Firefighters and members of FDNY DART (Disaster Assistance Response Team) deployed to the Houston area to handle distribution of emergency relief supplies. The teams later went to Florida, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.

Here is a view of them as they head out.

August 26th--Matt Teter, Hurricane Harvey
Matt Teter of Manhattan spent several weeks in Texas and surrounding regions to report on events as they were unfolding.

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