UPDATE: Sunday, April 15, 2012
The American Red Cross is working the morning after severe weather and tornadoes displaced people and families throughout south-central Kansas. Today, the Red Cross shelter at 801 E. Market, in Derby, Kan. remains open, where mental health counseling has been available.
“Interestingly, despite all the assistance a person will receive through their recovery process, what people tend to remember most is that someone stopped to show they cared,” said James Williams, Red Cross spokesperson. “Taking care of yourself emotionally is just as important as recovering physically.”
Red Cross continues to evolve with the community’s needs. Today Red Cross will be focusing on feeding, sheltering and damage assessment, which gives Red Cross a better picture of how it should respond.
“The recovery is still in its infant stages,” Williams said. “As the community’s needs change, Red Cross will adapt to provide the appropriate assistance.”
There are ways people can and cannot help. While well intended, in-kind donations of clothing, food, water or other supplies are not needed. Red Cross appreciates the offers of help, but right now the best way to help disaster victims is with a financial donation by texting the word REDCROSS to 9-0-9-9-9 or by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS. While no blood drives have been canceled, Red Cross depends on generous volunteer blood donors to provide lifesaving blood in need – each and every day.
April 15, 2012
The American Red Cross Midway-Kansas Chapteris on the scene in the Wichita area to help those affected by recent severe weather. An emergency shelter opened at 3 a.m. at the Derby Recreation Center,801 E. Market to help residents impacted by the storm by offering a safe place to stay, minor first aid and a shoulder to lean on.
“In the days and weeks to come, Midway-Kansas Chapter will be coordinating with emergency officials and local community partners to help residents impacted by the tornado get back on their feet,” said
James Williams, Red Cross spokesperson. “The Red Cross will keep shelters open as long as needed, in addition to providing mobile feeding and mental health support to those affected by the storm.”
The Red Cross offers thefollowing tips for those in the affected area to stay safer:
Continue listening to local radio or television stations or a NOAA Weather Radiofor updated information and instructions. If you are away from home, return only when authorities say it is safe to do so.
Avoid damaged areas as your presence might hamper rescue and other emergency operations and put you at further risk from the residual effects of tornadoes.
Stay out of damaged buildings.
When it is safe to return home, wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, and sturdy shoes when examining your walls, doors, staircases and windows for damage.
Watch out for fallen power lines or broken gas lines and report them to the utility company immediately.
Use battery-powered lanterns or flashlights when examining buildings. Avoid using candles.
If you smell gas or hear a blowing or hissing noise, open a window and get everyone out of the building quickly.Turn off the gas using the outside main valve if you can, and call the gas company from a neighbor’s home. If you turn off the gas for any reason, it must be turned back on by a professional.