When disaster tears apart lives, relief organizations like the Red Cross
step right in to help.
With everything from wildfires to flooding, this year has been tough on the
country and on the relief organizations trying to help, as the constant need
for assistance starts to push the volunteers and resources to their limits.
"The great thing about Kansas is when something happens, we pitch in and
help our neighbors," said Andrea Anglin, a spokesperson with Midway Kansas Red Cross.
That's exactly what disaster relief volunteers did after deadly storms
ripped through the state, leaving towns in pieces.
"We've been really busy and Wichita, we're from the largest chapter in
Kansas and we really have a lot of folks to pull from," said Anglin.
Nine volunteers from the Red Cross chapter in Wichita were immediately sent to help in Chapman as well as the shelter set up in Abilene. Wichita also has
volunteers in Iowa, Indiana and Wisconsin.
"There are several other organizations we work with who do disaster relief,
like Salvation Army, the United Way will set up funds as well," said Anglin.
But the need for help is stretching these organizations thin.
"Last year we had a major disaster every 90 days. Everything from the ice
storms to Greensburg, tornadoes to the chemical plant in Valley Center,"
Since April, relief crews have worked more than 40 disaster operations.
The constant stream of disaster situations is leaving organizations
volunteers and finances drained.
"That's the relief fund we work from so we can respond immediately to
something when it happens so we don't have to wait and raise money to
respond," said Anglin.
While Anglin said she hopes more people step forward to volunteer or make
donations she said in the end she just wants to make sure people who need
the help the most get it.
"That kind of situation reminds me of why we do this because if it's three
in the morning, red crossers will get up and go," said Anglin.
If you'd like to become a volunteer or make a donation , you can contact the
Red Cross at 800-REDCROSS or visit their web site at www.REDCROSS.Org.