Thursday, September 7, 2017

Restoring Family Links after a Hurricane

Thursday, September 7, 2017 - Now that Hurricane Irma has impacted the islands in the Caribbean we know that people are concerned about loved ones that they may have lost contact with. Here is
some information that might be helpful when searching for those people.

Keep calling, sending text messages and trying to connect via email or social media; calling during off-peak hours may help to get through clogged phone lines.

Contact other family members or neighbors who live nearby or may also be concerned about the sought person.

Situation Overview

The islands of Saba, St. Eustatius and St. Maarten (Dutch territory) as well as the islands of Saint-Martin and Saint-Barthelemy (French territory) have been hit by Hurricane Irma on September 6, 2017 leaving widespread damage. The communications infrastructure on the islands has been heavily damaged.

Restoring Family Links Response

The Dutch territories of Saba, St Eustatius, and St Maarten, fall within the jurisdiction of the Netherlands Red Cross. The Netherlands Red Cross has launched a Safe and Well website: https://ikbenveilig.nl . 

The Safe and Well website facilitates communication from inside the disaster-affected areas to family members outside the disaster areas. 

The Netherlands Red Cross is actively engaged in assisting individuals on the islands to register on the site as ‘Safe and Well’. Inquirers must provide the sought person’s name and the sought person’s address or phone number in order to search the list of those who have self-registered and view any "safe and well" messages that they may have left for their loved-ones. The website is available in English and Dutch. At the present time, the Netherlands Red Cross is not able to conduct active tracing on the ground, and therefore traditional tracing inquiries are NOT accepted at this time.

The French territories of St Martin and St Barthelemy fall within the jurisdiction of the French Red Cross. At the present time, Tracing inquiries are NOT accepted. For the time being, please advise inquirers concerned about relatives on St Martin or St Barthelemy to contact the French authorities at +331 82 71 03 37.

Inquiries concerning U.S. citizens (on foreign land, i.e. US Citizen in Cuba) should be referred to the U.S. Department of State, Office of Overseas Citizens Services, at 1-888-407-4747 and http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/overseas-citizens-services.shtml.

Inquiries concerning U.S. territory (i.e. USVI, Puerto Rico, continental USA, etc.) should be referred to American Red Cross Safe and Well website. Website: www.safeandwell.org. Individuals can search for loved ones based upon entering 2 of 3 components (Full Name AND Phone Number OR Address). In the event that the sought person may be part of vulnerable population, a health and welfare check can potentially be initiated.

Domestic Disaster Emergency Welfare Inquiry and Family Reunification Request can be invoked. Please see www.safeandwell.org for forms to invoke a Welfare Inquiry. Vulnerable can include, but not limited to: health concerns; mental health concerns; mobility concerns; unaccompanied minors; and elderly. The form must be completed and submitted by Red Cross.

Remember to keep calling, sending text messages and trying to connect via email or social media; calling during off-peak hours may help to get through clogged phone lines. Try to contact other family members or neighbors who live nearby or may also be concerned about the sought person.

During a disaster the free Red Cross mobile app, Emergency, can help you stay in touch with family and loved ones. Download the app from www.redcross.org/apps or your preferred app vendor.

    Wednesday, September 6, 2017

    Disaster Response: Hurricane Irma

    Monday, September 11, 2017 - The Red Cross has a massive relief effort underway across multiple states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, providing safe shelter to people in the path of Irma’s fury. The Red Cross is part of a large team of agencies and organizations responding to provide help to those in need.

    Overnight. Sunday 9/10, an estimated 208,000 people sought refuge from Hurricane Irma in as many as 680 government and Red Cross evacuation centers across 6 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. This includes--
    o   In Florida, an estimated 200,100 people in 587 evacuation centers.
    o   In Georgia, more than 6,500 people in over 40 evacuation centers.
    o   In Alabama, about 40 people in 16 evacuation centers.
    o   In South Carolina, about 660 people in 23 evacuation centers.
    o   On the U.S. Virgin Islands, almost 380 people in 6 evacuation centers. 
    o   In Puerto Rico, 154 people in 6 evacuation centers.
    o   In Tennessee, 131 people in 4 evacuation centers.
    o   In North Carolina, 33 people in 4 evacuation centers

    As Red Cross volunteers continue to support the operations in Texas, in response to Hurricane Harvey, more volunteers have answered the call to help Florida and the southeastern states as Hurricane Irma made landfall and continues to move up into Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina. More than 1,800 Red Cross workers are responding to Irma now with more than 400 on the way. As of this morning we have more than 125 people deployed from the Colorado & Wyoming region.

    From Southeastern Colorado
    Paula Gregory - Government Relations
    Sally Martin - Shelter Worker
    Bill Fortune - Public Affairs

    From Northern Colorado
    Julia Stamper - Shelter Worker
    Diane Littlefield - Shelter Worker
    Denise Kinde - Shelter Worker

    From Western Colorado
    Sallyanne Johnson - Disaster Mental Health
    Kelly Paulsen - Shelter Worker
    Della Wilson - Disaster Mental Health
    Amy Mueller - Shelter Worker
    Josh Stewart - Public Affairs

    From Mile High Area 
    Catherine Leventhal- Digital Volunteer
    Veronica Quinn - Shelter Worker
    Geoff Goodman - Government Relations
    Helen Robinson - Technology Support
    Thomas Jones - Shelter Worker
    Nicole Kersey - Shelter Worker
    David Schneider - Shelter Worker
    Harry Ladewig - Shelter Worker
    Dan Mosely - Disaster Mental Health
    K. Nigel Holderby - Public Affairs
    Melanie Roth-Lawson - Shelter Worker

    From Wyoming 
    Monte Haas - Shelter Worker
    Cindi Shank - Shelter Supervisor
    Mel Warren - Government Relations

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Wednesday, September 6, 2017 - Hurricane Irma continues to move toward Florida with landfall on Sunday, according to the National Hurricane Center. The Red Cross has already mobilized equipment, supplies and disaster responders at a staging area in Orlando, FL.
    Noon MDT 090617 from NOAA/National Hurricane Center

    While nearly 70 disaster responders from Colorado and Wyoming have been deployed to the Texas Gulf Coast for Hurricane Harvey Relief, we have also deployed ten of our disaster responders to the Orlando staging area ahead of Hurricane Irma landfall. The Red Cross is mobilizing hundreds of trained Red Cross disaster relief workers and deploying truckloads of relief supplies to support this response effort. Shelter supplies for 120,000 people are on the way to help people impacted with Irma, along with 100,000 shelf-stable meals and almost 80 emergency response vehicles.

    In addition to those listed below the following volunteers are heading to Florida:
    From Southeastern Colorado
    Keith Mercantel - Shelter Supervisor
    Gregory Adkins - Shelter Worker
    Cathleen Smith - Shelter Worker
    John Hartling - Shelter Worker

    From Northern Colorado
    Sierra Horner - Shelter Worker
    Christy Lard - Shelter Worker
    Donald Nelson -  Shelter Worker

    The Red Cross depends on financial donations to be able to provide disaster relief immediately. Help people affected by Hurricane Irma by visiting redcross.org, calling 1- 800-RED CROSS or texting the word IRMA to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from this disaster. The Red Cross honors donor intent. Donors can designate their donation to Hurricane Irma relief efforts by choosing that option when donating on redcross.org or on 1-800-RED CROSS. The best way to ensure your donation will go to a specific disaster is to write the specific disaster name in the memo line of a check. We also recommend completing and mailing the donation form on redcross.org with your check

    If you have people in Florida that you are concerned about you can advise them to download the Red Cross mobile app, Emergency. Using the app can help you stay in contact with those people in Florida. You can also get near realtime information concerning the Hurricane by using the free Emergency app. The Emergency App is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps.

    To get updates on Hurricane Irma and the Red Cross response visit www.redcross.org.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Tuesday, September 5, 2017 - Even while our disaster response is in full swing in Texas with over 3,000 responders on the ground in the disaster zone, our teams are gearing up to support relief efforts, should they be needed with Hurricane Irma.

    Hurricane Irma forecast track from Sep 5, 2017
    Courtesy NOAA/NHC
    Hurricane Irma went up to a category 5 hurricane Sunday night and most recent forecasts have the
    storm moving across the Florida Keys this weekend. Our disaster responders are already being put on standby so that they are ready to move quickly if the forecast track proves true.

    Four disaster responders from Colorado are packing bags for deployment. They will travel to Orlando that is serving as a staging area for Red Cross deployments:

    Southeastern Colorado
    Douglas Van Allen - Sheltering Supervisor
    Delbert Hayden - Shelter worker

    Northern Colorado
    David West - Shelter worker

    Western Colorado
    Jenny Roberts - Shelter worker

    Friday, August 25, 2017

    Responding to the Call for Disaster Relief

    Update: Thursday, Aug 31, 2017 - Colorado and Wyoming Red Cross continues to support the disaster relief effort for people affected by Hurricane Harvey. We have a total of 43 Red Crossers assigned to the disaster response in Dallas and Houston, Texas and 1 person assigned to support sheltering in Louisiana.

    August 29, 2017. George R. Brown Convention
    Center, Red Cross Mega Shelter, Houston, Texas.
    Photo:Daniel Cima/American Red Cross
    Recent deployments to the Texas Gulf Coast
    Southeast Colorado:
    Stephan Brewton - Shelter Supervisor
    Ronald Quay - Shelter worker

    Northern Colorado:
    Julie Demaree - Shelter worker

    Wyomng:
    Megan Michael-Smith - Disaster Mental Health Counselor
    Britney Good - Shelter Worker



    Update: Tuesday, August 29, 2017 - Since Sunday, 20 additional disaster responders from Colorado and Wyoming have deployed to support the Hurricane Harvey response. This brings our total to 39 people assigned to Hurricane Harvey Relief. The list below has the names and home chapters of the responder.

    Almost 1,000 volunteers are on the ground and more help is on the way. They will be joined by a group of highly-skilled volunteers from the Mexican Red Cross who will help support shelters, distribute aid, and connect with Spanish speaking disaster survivors. Along with our partners we have served nearly 30,000 meals and snacks since the storm began.

    More than 80 tractor-trailer loads of cots, blankets, ready-to-eat meals, comfort kits, kitchen supplies and cleaning supplies are now on the ground in Texas. More than half of our emergency response fleet - 200 Emergency Response Vehicles - have been activated for the operation.

    You can find shelters by calling 800-REDCROSS (800-733-2767), visiting redcross.org or by downloading the free Red Cross Emergency App.

    Mile High Chapter/Colorado
    Bob Dewey
    Constance Hoffer
    Kendal Nigel Holderby
    Gretchen Burdekin

    Wyoming: 
    Kaleigh Good
    Robert Robertson
    Darcie Wisehart
    Sylvia Raumaker
    Gypsy Petz - to Louisiana

    Northern Colorado:
    Ron Hedrick
    Ruben Marez
    Ron Hedrick
    Michael Jones
    Cheryl Ann Hood

    Western Colorado
    Kathy Urso
    Michael Leak
    Anthony Lopez

    Southeast Colorado
    Richard Muszynski
    Stuart Nieburgh
    Stephen Brewton

    How can you help? CLICK, CALL or TEXT
    The best way to help the Red Cross help the people affected by Hurricane Harvey is to go to www.redcross.org and click on donate. You can call 1-800-REDCROSS and donate by phone. You can text HARVEY to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
    Helping a family at a shelter! Photo:American Red Cross
    ane Harvey is through a financial donation. You can go to

    Can I volunteer to help?
    YES, we need community volunteers to help out. If you are a strong, compassionate person with some time to volunteer contact your nearest Red Cross office or visit www.redcross.org/wyoming.

    For the latest news release from the Red Cross about our Hurricane Harvey response go to: http://www.redcross.org/news/article/In-the-Wake-of-Hurricane-Harvey-Red-Cross-Relief-Efforts-Underway

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    UPDATE: Friday, August 25, 2017 - as of 9 AM, Friday a total of 18 Colorado and Wyoming Disaster Responders are heading to the Texas Gulf Coast to support the disaster relief efforts due to Hurricane Harvey. In addition, one volunteer (Catherine Leventhal, from Mile High Area is responding from home in Denver to help monitor social media.

    Volunteer Andrew Aerenson in the Emergency Response
    Vehicle ready to head to Houston. Photo by Bill Fortune/
    American Red Cross
    in addition to those mentioned in earlier messaging (see below) the following are on their way to help with the response effort:

    Mile High Area:
    Maureen Kelly
    Carroll Larremore
    Larry Walz
    Kevin Erickson
    Catherine Leventhal (virtual)
    Jaici Murcia 

    Western Colorado:
    Ted Mueller
    Steven Harris
    Volunteers from Northern Colorado Red Cross get ready
    to head to Houston. Photo/American Red Cross

    Northern Colorado:
    Ken Harnett

    Southeastern Colorado:
    Sally Broomfield

    Wyoming:
    Spencer Pollock
    Charlie Magee
    Charlotte Handy

    Red Cross volunteer checks out the ERV before
    heading to Houston. Photo by Nigel Holderby/Red Cross
    In addition to those listed above, we continue to have 2 volunteers deployed to the fires in British Columbia and 1 volunteer deployed to Kansas City, MO.

















    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Thursday, August 24, 2017 - The Red Cross is responding to several disasters across the Country. Major Flooding in Kansas City, Mo. and potential flooding in the Texas Gulf Coast. Equipment and volunteers from Colorado and Wyoming are heading out to help.

    Kansas City, MO Flood Response
    Dennis Hoyt, a volunteer from Walsenburg, CO, from the Red Cross of Southeastern Colorado, will travel to Kansas City, MO to help as a member of the Government Liaison team. He will coordinate with local, state and federal government to help direct the Red Cross response in that area.

    Texas Gulf Coast Flood Response
    As tropical storm Harvey increases in strength the threat of major flooding and storm surge will increase along the Texas Gulf Coast and points inland.

    The Red Cross has rallied resources including people and equipment to prepare for the impact that the flooding might bring. Three Emergency Response Vehicles (ERV) and six Red Cross volunteers from Colorado will travel to Houston to begin preparation for response. The volunteers and their ERVs will depart from the Mile High Area facility in Denver.

    The Emergency Response Vehicle (ERV) is a large box-type vehicle that serves as the primary Red Cross vehicle for transporting food and cleanup supplies. The vehicles will be assigned to specific kitchens where they will carry food into the stricken neighborhoods. They may also be assigned to a Red Cross warehouse to transport cleanup supplies.

    Bill and Judy Howell are a husband and wife team from the Northern Colorado Chapter will take the ERV from that chapter.

    Andrew Aerenson is a volunteer with the Western Colorado Chapter. He and Herman Dieball from the Northern Colorado Chapter will take the Western Colorado ERV to Houston.


    Eugene McGuire and Corey Hixson ,who volunteer with the Mile High Area Red Cross, will take the ERV from the Mile High Chapter to Houston.

    The Red Cross of Colorado and Wyoming will keep other equipment in the Region to support any disaster response needs within Colorado or Wyoming.

    If you are interested in helping the Red Cross provide relief for disasters like floods you can donate to the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund by visiting www.redcross.org or by calling 1-800-REDCROSS.

    If you are interested in volunteering with the American Red Cross visit our website, www.redcross.org/colorado.

    Monday, August 21, 2017

    Disaster Workers Deploying to Canada Wildfires

    Denver, Monday, August 21, 2017 - The American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming is sending disaster workers to help with the devastating wildfires in British Columbia, Canada.

    Photo courtesy BC Fire
    Dana Goldsmith is a volunteer with the Red Cross of Southeastern Colorado. She has been a volunteer for more than 4 years and is an important member of the southeast Colorado team. In British Columbia, Goldsmith will serve as a member of the Staff Services team. As such she will work to ensure that other volunteers have lodging and other Red Cross support. She will travel from Colorado Springs on Tuesday, August 22.  

    Heather Zoccali will travel to Kamloops, British Columbia to help with the wildfire recovery as a Client Services Specialist. As such she will help individual families as the try to recover from the devastating wildfires. Zoccali is a volunteer with the Red Cross of Northern Colorado and has deployed to large scale disasters on other occasions.

    For stories and background information visit the Canadian Red Cross Blog at http://www.redcross.ca/blog/home or visit the Canadian Red Cross of British Columbia at http://www.redcross.ca/how-we-help/current-emergency-responses/british-columbia-fires, or for wildfire information visit: https://www.facebook.com/BCForestFireInfo/.

    To help the Red Cross respond to disasters like floods and wildfires donate on line by visiting www.redcross.org. You can also call 1-800-REDCROSS to make a donation.

    About the American Red Cross:

    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

    Tuesday, August 8, 2017

    Cat and Dog First Aid Online Course Now Available

    Learn how to provide emergency care for pets until veterinary assistance is available


    For more than 100 years, the American Red Cross has been training people to perform first aid skills so they could save the lives of others. Now, the organization announces the release of its new Cat and Dog First Aid online course so that owners will know what to do in an emergency until veterinary care is available.

    “Millions of people learn how to respond to emergencies and save lives by enrolling in American Red Cross training programs,” said Gino Greco, CEO for Colorado and Wyoming. “Now, cat and dog owners, pet-sitters and dog walkers can take the Red Cross Cat and Dog First Aid online course and learn life-saving skills for their pets.”

    People can access the course on their desktop or tablet at redcross.org/catdogfirstaid and go through the content at their own pace. It takes approximately 30 minutes to complete the course. Participants can stop and pick up where they left off if Fluffy needs a treat or it’s time to take Fido out to the dog park.

    The interactive course includes:

    · How to determine a pet’s normal vital signs so that owners can notice if there are any irregularities;
    · Step-by-step instructions and visual aids for what to do if a pet is choking, needs CPR, has a wound, or is having a seizure; and
    · Information on preventative care, health and tips for a pet’s well-being.

    DOWNLOAD THE PET FIRST AID APP

    The Red Cross Pet First Aid App complements the course by providing cat and dog owners with instant access to expert advice, an animal hospital locator, pet-friendly hotels, content on how to include pets in family emergency preparedness plans and more.

    The app can be downloaded for free in mobile app stores or by texting ‘GETPET’ to 90999. American Pet Nutrition is a proud sponsor of the Pet First Aid App.

    About the American Red Cross:
    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

    Monday, July 31, 2017

    Red Cross helps 110 people after disasters during July 2017


    American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming, July 31, 2017 — The American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming responds to calls for assistance, on average, twice to three times a day.
    From flooding and house fires, or damage caused by weather, Red Cross volunteers respond to provide help and hope 24 hours a day and all 7 days of the week. Of the 110 people helped by Red Cross, more than 40 were children under the age of 18, and nearly a dozen were age 60 or older.

    “July has not been as busy for us as the past few months have been,” said Gino Greco, Regional CEO for Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming. “We like to think this reflects a higher level of awareness for the importance of preparedness in the communities we serve.” As part of the Red Cross mission, we continue to educate communities around fire safety and the importance of working smoke alarms, as well as general weather safety.

    Breakdown of the CO & WY 87 county service area:

    Mile High Area (MHC): 40 individuals received aid; Half of those who received help were under 18 years old. The MHC response area includes 10 counties in the Denver Metro area.

    Southeastern Colorado Chapter (SeCO): 33 individuals received aid; 11 were under 18 years old while four were age 65 or older. The SeCO response area includes 16 counties.

    Northern Colorado Chapter (NoCO): Seven individuals received aid; Four were under 18 years old. The NoCO response area includes 11 counties.

    Western Colorado Chapter (WeCO): Seven individuals received aid. Three of those helped were under 18 years old. The WeCo response area covers 27 counties, serving all western Colorado and the San Luis Valley.

    Wyoming Chapter: 23 individuals received aid; Seven were under age 18 with the oldest person receiving assistance being 84. The Wyoming Chapter response area covers all 23 counties that make up the state of Wyoming.

    The families and individuals were provided a place to stay, money for clothes, food and medicine. Along with providing casework for the residents in a quick and efficient time frame, Red Cross volunteers will continue to provide support to these families going forward, by doing follow up work to ensure all needs are met and the individuals have a clear path to recovery from this personal disaster.

    About the American Red Cross:The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.



    Thursday, July 20, 2017

    Wyoming Red Crosser Deploying to Wisconsin

    Cheyenne, WY - Thursday, July 20, 2017- Red Cross disaster workers deploying to Wisconsin in response to significant flooding.
    Flooding in southeast Wisconsin

    Heavy rains have caused significant flooding over Wisconsin this week and many people have been displaced requiring the opening of multiple shelters. Additional heavy rain is forecast for the region.

    Sylvia Raumaker, a volunteer with the Red Cross of Wyoming, will deploy to Wisconsin to serve as a shelter supervisor. As such, Sylvia will work closely with shelter workers and residents to provide the services needed by those affected. Sylvia has been a Red Cross disaster worker for several years and is a frequent responder when the call of support is given. Sylvia recently returned from supporting the affected by the Arizona wildfires in June.

    Red Cross volunteers and staff are currently working more than 15 disaster responses from California to New York. A typical deployment to a large scale disaster is from 14 to 21 days. If you would like to become a Red Cross disaster responder visit our website at www.redcross.org and click on the word Volunteer.

    The Red Cross relies on donations to help disaster victims. Please click, text or call to
    donate to the Red Cross to help people affected by disasters big and small. Every single
    donation brings hope to those in need.

    You can help people affected by disasters like floods and wildfire crises by making a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief.  Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to
    make a $10 donation.


    Wednesday, July 19, 2017

    Disaster Responders Heading to California Wildfires

    Smoke from California wildfires. Photo courtesy NOAA/NWS
    Denver, Wednesday, July 19, 2017 - The American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming is sending disaster workers to help with the wildfires currently in California.

    Dennis Hughes, with the Mile High Area Red Cross will deploy as a shelter supervisor. Hughes is currently the Disaster Program Manager for the Mile High Area. This will be his first deployment to a large-scale disaster outside of Colorado.

    , a volunteer from Powell, WY with the Red Cross of Wyoming, will travel to California to serve as a shelter supervisor for the shelters in California. As such she will supervise shelter operations to ensure high quality service delivery for those in the shelters. Charlotte has deployed to many large-scale disasters across the country.

    To see the latest news about how you can help the Red Cross help the hundreds of people that have lost everything due to the wildfires in California visit http://www.redcross.org/news/article/Red-Cross-Responds-as-Wildfires-Rage-in-California.



    Monday, July 17, 2017

    Here When You Need Us; No Matter Your Rank

    Every day, the American Red Cross provides 24/7 global emergency communication services and support to members of the military community and their families. Through a network of volunteers and staff, we are here when you need us; no matter your rank.

    Recently, we had the honor to talk with Major General Reiner, Adjutant General for Wyoming, about his experience with the Red Cross emergency communication process. Throughout his military career General Reiner has seen the process used to help his fellow service men and women, but it wasn't until he had his own personal family emergency that he got to see how the process worked first hand. As an Honorary Board Member for the Red Cross of Wyoming, General Reiner has a strong connection to the Red Cross services and knew who to call when he needed to have his daughter, who was on active duty away from home, return home when her grandmother passed away. "There is a process in place that is important, no matter what rank you get to," said General Reiner. "When you have an emergency the Red Cross provides validity and substantiates the request." Red Cross verified information assists service members and their commanding officers with making a decision regarding emergency leave.

    People eligible to receive an emergency communication message include:
    • Anyone on active duty in the Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force or Coast Guard
    • An activated member of the Guard and Reserve of all branches of the U.S.
    Armed Forces
    • An immediate family member or dependent of anyone in the above categories
    • A civilian employed by or under contract to the Department of Defense and
    stationed outside the Continental United States and any family residing with them
    at that location
    • A Cadet or midshipman at a service academy; ROTC cadet on orders for training
    • A Merchant Marine aboard a U.S. Naval Ship

    Knowing in advance that military families will be able to reach their loved one and have access to financial and other types of assistance during an emergency brings peace of mind to families who are separated. "You know bad things happen in life and as we, in the military, are scattered all over the world it is important to have rapid and accurate information," said General Reiner. "This network of great Red Cross volunteers is here, and they're doing a great service in the states and across the nation. When you need them, they are here. You just have to make sure you know who to call."

    The Red Cross has a new online option to give military families more flexibility and expanded access to help during times of crisis. People can now request help online at redcross.org/HeroCareNetwork or by calling 877-272-7337. This new and secure online option is easy to use and just like the toll free number, is available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, from anywhere in the world. With this new online option, in addition to starting an emergency message, online users will be able to monitor the status of there message as it goes through the verification and delivery process.

    The American Red Cross Hero Care App is another way we help members of the military, veterans and their families identify and access both emergency and non-emergency Red Cross services from anywhere around the world. The Hero Care App is available to download for free in app stores, by texting 'GETHEROCARE' to 90999 or by clicking the following link from a mobile device. http://3cu.be/sharehc. 

    *Photo used, courtesy of Major General Reiner and family. 

    About the American Red Cross:The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.


    Thursday, June 29, 2017

    Sending Volunteers to Help with Arizona Fires



    Disaster Workers Deploying to Support Wildfire Response
    Workers will bring help and hope to those recovering from devastating wildfires

    Denver, Thursday, June 29, 2017 - The American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming is sending disaster volunteers to help with the wildfires currently in Arizona and New Mexico.

    Terri Faulkner, a volunteer from Greeley, CO with the Red Cross of Northern Colorado will travel to Arizona to be a shelter worker. As such she will work closely with people that have evacuated from the wildfire south of Prescott, AZ. This will be her first deployment to a large-scale disaster outside of Colorado.

    Sylvia Raumaker, a volunteer from Jackson, WY with the Red Cross of Wyoming, will travel to Arizona to serve as a shelter supervisor for the shelters near Prescott, AZ. As such she will supervise shelter operations to ensure high quality service delivery for those in the shelters. This will be the ninth deployment for Sylvia.

    To see the latest news about how you can help the Red Cross help the hundreds of people that have lost everything due to the wildfires in Arizona and New Mexico visit www.redcross.org.



    Lightner Creek Wildfire Response

    Durango, CO, Thursday, June 29, 2017, 2 PM - The Red Cross has opened a shelter for those people evacuated due to the Lightner Creek Wildfire near Durango, CO.

    The shelter was originally opened at the La Plata County Fairgrounds Wednesday evening. At noon on Thursday, the shelter was moved to the Escalante Middle School located at 141 Baker Lane, Durango, CO. The shelter will remain open for as long as the need continues.

    La Plata County Fairgrounds will continue to be used but to house the firefighters and the Incident Command Team.

    People with pets will need to take them to the La Plata Fairgrounds for temporary housing that is provided by the La Plata County Humane Society,

    HOW YOU CAN HELP
    The easiest and best way to help at this time is to make a financial donation to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief. You can do that by calling 1-800-REDCROSS, going on line to RedCross.org or by texting the word redcross to 90999. The text will generate a $10 donation that will show up on your phone bill.

    IN-KIND DONATIONS
    Please do not bring donations to the shelter at the Escalante Middle School. At this time we have sufficient supplies to take care of those people in our shelter and to take care of the fire fighters. Should the need arise for donated items that information will be broadcast through social media and traditional media.

    WILDFIRE INFORMATION
    Information about the progress of the fire and evacuation requirements are available from the Durango community hotline at 970-385-8700 and at the La Plata County Facebook page at facebook.com/LaPlataCo. Follow the Red Cross on Twitter using @WCORedcross and follow La Plata County usinf @LaPlataCountyCO. 


    Tuesday, June 20, 2017

    Lightning Safety Information

    By Bill Fortune

    It is that time of year when outdoor activities conflict with hazardous weather. Working with the National Weather Service, we thought it would be helpful to provide some discussion about outdoor lightning risk reduction.

    Being outdoors is the most dangerous place to be during a thunderstorm. Each year, nearly all people in the United States injured or killed by lightning were involved in an outdoor activity. They were struck while working outside, were at or participating at an outdoor sporting event, or were boating or fishing. Other examples include people struck while they were hiking, mowing the lawn or simply going to or from their car. Quite a few were on their own property when they were struck.


    Unfortunately, there is no place outside that is safe from lightning. 

    The only safe place to be when lightning is occurring is either inside a substantial building, or an enclosed automobile. Here are some important things to remember before venturing outdoors:

    • An informed decision will help you avoid being in an area where lightning is expected to occur. Before heading out, get an updated forecast. 
    • Stay tuned to NOAA Weather Radio, check National Weather Service web sites, go to your favorite broadcast or print media, or access your favorite weather apps on your cell phone for the latest forecast. 
    • In Wyoming, it is important to remember that thunderstorms typically develop in the mountains after 11 am. So it is best to plan your climbing or hiking trip so that you are coming down the mountain by late morning. If thunderstorms are in the forecast, consider planning an alternate indoor activity or, if you still plan to be outside, make a plan which will allow you to quickly get to a safe shelter if a storm should develop. 
    • Once you are outside, keep up-to-date on the weather via your smart phone or portable NOAA weather radio receiver. Check for updated forecasts. Check if storms are near you by checking the latest radar imagery on your cell phone. There are now several smart phone apps you can purchase that show you real-time lightning activity in your area. 
    • Do not forget to simply look around you to make sure storms are not developing in your vicinity. 


    Two outdoor lightning scenarios


    • Outside and shelter is nearby. If you are outside, such as a park, a lake, or an outdoor sporting event, know where the nearest safe location can be accessed.. A safe location is any substantial building (A substantial building is a structure which is fully enclosed and has electrical wiring and plumbing). Examples of substantial buildings include a business, a home, or a church. In addition, any enclosed hard-topped car or truck also offers excellent protection from a lightning strike. 
      • Once you hear thunder or see lightning, immediately stop what you are doing and quickly get to the safe shelter. Do not wait until the rain starts to seek safe shelter. 
      • Once inside a safe shelter, it is recommended you stay there for 30 minutes after the last rumble of thunder. Past history has shown that most people who were outdoors and were injured or killed by lightning had access to a nearby safe shelter. 
      • Do not wait to seek safe shelter when lightning threatens. 
      • When you hear thunder or see lightning, it is important for you, and your family, to act quickly. 
      • It is critically important to avoid shelters that are not safe from lightning, such as picnic shelters, bullpens, any type of tent, or any other small buildings that are open to the elements. 
      • NEVER...NEVER...get under a tree when a thunderstorm is nearby or overhead. 
      • It is important that all sports leagues and other outdoor groups have a lightning response plan that is understood and consistently applied for the safety of the participants. Part of the plan would include a designated weather watcher at each outdoor event with the authority to postpone or cancel the event due to the threat of lightning. It is also important that people know where to seek safe shelter if a storm should threaten. 
    • If no safe shelter is nearby. This situation typically occurs to people who are hiking or camping in the back country. Unfortunately, in this scenario, there is not much you can do to reduce your risk from being struck by lightning. 

      • The best thing to do is move away from tall isolated objects, such as trees. 
      • Stay away from wide open areas. 
      • Stay as low as possible with your feet close together if lightning is nearby. 
      • If you are with a group of people, spread out, that way if someone is struck by lightning, the others can offer first aid. 
      • If camping in the back country, place your tent in a low area away from tall isolated trees. 
    Much of the material and the graphics for this article were provided by the National Weather Service. For more information about lightning safety visit www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov. For information about preparing for emergencies visit www.redcross.org. For detailed weather information anytime visit www.weather.gov.

    Thursday, June 15, 2017

    Red Cross Helps 158 People after Disasters

    American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming, June 8, 2017 — The American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming responds to calls for assistance, on average, twice to three times a day across the two-state region. Of the 158 people helped, more than 60 were age 60 or older.

    Breakdown of the CO & WY 87 county service area:
    Mile High Chapter (MHC): 53 individuals received aid; 25 were children under 18 years old and one person was age 60 or older. The MHC response area includes 10 counties in the Denver Metro area.

    Southeastern Colorado Chapter (SECO): 33 individuals received aid; ten were under 18 years old with two being over 60 years of age. The SECO response area includes 16 counties.

    Northern Colorado Chapter (NOCO): 18 individuals received aid; ten were under 18 years old and one over age 60. The NOCO response area includes 11 counties.

    Western Colorado Chapter (WCO): 38 individuals received aid; 15 were under 18 years old and two were over age 60. The WCO response area covers 27 counties, serving all of western Colorado and the San Luis Valley.

    Wyoming Chapter (WYO): 16 individuals received aid; six children and one person over 60 years of age were among those assisted. The Wyoming Chapter response area covers all 23 counties that make up the state of Wyoming.


    The families and individuals were provided a place to stay, money for clothes, food and medicine. Along with providing casework for the residents in a quick and efficient time frame, Red Cross volunteers will continue to provide support to these families going forward, by doing follow up work to ensure all needs are met and the individuals have a clear path to recovery from this personal disaster. 

    For the latest news about the Red Cross response across the country visit our national website at redcross.org

    Thursday, May 25, 2017

    Better Together; Partnerships Prepare Communities


    The Wind River Indian Reservation has seen disaster numerous times with past flooding, and this year will be no exception. When the Red Cross responds to flooded homes it's not just another house, but community members who have immediate needs.

    "It's a great feeling when you can come alongside and offer assistance. It's an even better feeling when we have can join forces with partners to prepare a community in advance; to try and prevent loss of life and property," said Kaleigh Good, Disaster Program Manager for Red Cross of Wyoming.

    Red Cross is proud to have been invited by the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho Tribes into a partnership for pre-flood mitigation. The partnership extends well beyond this pre-flood mitigation, as Red Cross frequently collaborates with Northern Arapaho Emergency Manager Harvey Spoonhunter and Eastern Shoshone Emergency Manager Vernon Hill. Together, Red Cross, Team Rubicon Region VIII, and Tribal Emergency Management officials are advocates for emergency preparedness and positioning the community for a stronger, more resilient place to call home.

    On day one of the mitigation project, Team Rubicon Region VIII Members gathered around for a morning briefing. "We are here to help protect life and property today; to hopefully keep some families from having to worry about the flooding that may occur," said the Team Leader. Team Rubicon Volunteers were thankful to the Red Cross for providing the support that allowed them to be part of the efforts and will spend the next few days filling sandbags in efforts to prepare the community in advance of the snow melt.

    Many members of the community began stacking sandbags several weeks ago as they prepared for severe flooding; the current snow water equivalent is more than 300% the normal range in the Wind River Basin.

    "This is my first mitigation. It's hard to come in and see the aftermath so this is nice to be here to hopefully help prevent some of that loss, " said Ashley Crandall, Team Rubicon volunteer who came in from Texas to help support the community. Many of the volunteers from Team Rubicon have traveled a great distance to be here helping this community, whose families see and experience some level of flooding every year. Take, for example,  Crawford, who has lived on the Wind River Reservation his entire life. He and his family, which consists of more than 100 brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts, and uncles are all part of this tight knit community on the reservation. "We are a lot more prepared now than we were in 2010," he said as he shared with us his experience of past flooding in the community and what they are doing to prepare for what they know is on the way. "It's great to see all the people who are coming together to help each other and to help their neighbors get ahead of it this year," he said.

    "We thought it was done snowing...but then we got more. That means more water in the rivers when it starts to melt and it all flows right down here," Crawford said.

    Floods are among the most frequent and costly natural disasters. The Red Cross provides several tools such as a free Emergency App which can be set to alert you to potential threats like flash flooding. You can learn more by clicking HERE, or from your mobile phone, Text GETEMERGENCY to 90999.

    Learn more about flood safety and preparedness, as well as what to do before, during, and after a flood event, or how YOU can help those who are affected by flooding this year at redcross.org.

    Photos By: Red Cross Volunteer, Nigel F. Holderby

    About the American Red Cross: The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission.

    Safety Tips for Memorial Day Weekend

    By Nigel Holderby

    American Red Cross of Colorado and Wyoming: May 25, 2017 — Many folks will spend the upcoming Memorial Day weekend taking a road trip, having their first picnic of the season or enjoying that first dip in the lake or pool. Follow these American Red Cross tips to stay safe and relish all the long holiday weekend has to offer. 

    DRIVING SAFETY 

    • Be well rested and alert, use your seat belts, observe speed limits and follow the rules of the road. 
    • If you plan on drinking alcohol, designate a driver who won’t drink. 
    • Give your full attention to the road. Avoid distractions such as cell phones. 
    • Use caution in work zones. There are lots of construction projects underway on the highways. 
    • Don’t follow other vehicles too closely. 
    • Make frequent stops. 
    • Clean your vehicle’s lights and windows to help you see, especially at night. Turn your headlights on as dusk approaches, or during inclement weather. Don’t overdrive your headlights. 
    • Don’t let your vehicle’s gas tank get too low. If you have car trouble, pull as far as possible off the highway.
    • Carry a Disaster Supplies Kit in your trunk. 
    • Let someone know where you are going, your route and when you expect to get there. If your car gets stuck along the way, help can be sent along your predetermined route. 

    GRILLING SAFETY 
    • Always supervise a barbecue grill when in use. 
    • Never grill indoors – not in your house, camper, tent, or any enclosed area. 
    • Make sure everyone, including the pets, stays away from the grill.  
    • Keep the grill out in the open, away from the house, the deck, tree branches, or anything that could catch fire. 
    • Use the long-handled tools especially made for cooking on the grill to keep the chef safe. 
    • Never add charcoal starter fluid when coals have already been ignited. 
    • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using grills. 

    WATER SAFETY  
    The following tips are layers of protection that will help people stay safe in, on and around the water: 

    video
    • Do your part, be water smart! Ensure that everyone in the family learns to swim well. 
    • Adults: actively supervise children; stay within arm’s reach of young children and newer swimmers. And kids: follow the rules. 
    • Don’t fool with a pool: fence it in. Enclose your pool and spa with four-sided, four-foot fencing and use self-closing, self-latching gates. 
    • Don’t just pack it; wear your U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket – always when on a boat and if in a situation beyond your skill level. Inflatable children’s toys and water wings can be fun, but they are no substitute for a life jacket and adult supervision. 
    • Swim as a pair near a lifeguard’s chair - everyone, including experienced swimmers, should swim with a buddy in areas protected by lifeguards. 
    • Reach or throw, don't go! Know what to do to help someone in trouble, without endangering yourself; know how and when to call 9-1-1; and know CPR. DOWNLOAD RED CROSS APPS The Red Cross app “Emergency” can help keep you and your loved ones safe by putting vital information in your hand for more than 35 different severe weather and emergency alerts. The Red Cross Swim App promotes water safety education and helps parents and caregivers of young people learning how to swim. The Red Cross First Aid App puts instant access to information on handling the most common first aid emergencies at your fingertips. Download these apps by searching for ‘American Red Cross’ in your app store or at redcross.org/apps. 

    Thursday, May 11, 2017

    Red Cross Helps 133 People After Disasters in 2017

    American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming, May 3, 2017 — The American Red Cross of
    Red Cross responder in front of apartment fire.
    Photo:American Red Cross
    Colorado & Wyoming responded to calls for assistance, on average, twice to three times a day to disasters of all types. From flooding and house fires, to several homes collapsing from being hit by a vehicle. Of the 133 people helped by Red Cross, at least 40 were children under the age of 18 including several infants. Nearly 20 of those assisted were age 60 or older.  

    “Not only are we providing this daily assistance in response to disasters, we also had a lot of people get trained in live saving skills,” said Gino Greco, Regional CEO for Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming. In the Denver Mile High Chapter office alone, there were more than 70 training classes held during the month of April.

    Breakdown of the CO & WY 87 county service area:
    Mile High Chapter (MHC): 33 individuals received aid; Eight were under 18 years old. The MHC response area includes 10 counties in the Denver Metro area.

    Southeastern Colorado Chapter (SoCO): 22 individuals received aid; Nine were under 18 years old. The SoCO response area includes 16 counties.

    Northern Colorado Chapter (NoCO): 27 individuals received aid; Seven were under 18 years old and six were age 60 or older. The NoCO response area includes 11 counties.

    Western Colorado Chapter (WeCO): 35 individuals received aid. 11 of those helped were under 18 years old. The WeCo response area covers 27 counties, serving all western Colorado and the San Luis Valley.

    Wyoming Chapter: 16 individuals received aid; Five were under age 18. The Wyoming Chapter response area covers all 23 counties that make up the state of Wyoming.


    The families and individuals were provided a place to stay, money for clothes, food and medicine. Along with providing casework for the residents in a quick and efficient time frame, Red Cross volunteers will continue to provide support to these families going forward, by doing follow up work to ensure all needs are met and the individuals have a clear path to recovery from this personal disaster. 

    Tuesday, May 2, 2017

    Disaster Workers Deploying to Missouri


    Workers will bring help and hope to those recovering from devastating floods

    The American Red Cross of Colorado & Wyoming is sending disaster staff and volunteers to Missouri to help with the flood recovery efforts.

    Darcie Wisehart will deploy to serve on the Disaster Mental Health team. Her role is to work with the people affected and the deployed Red Cross volunteers to support their emotional needs. Wiseheart is a volunteer with the Red Cross Wyoming chapter and lives in Greybull, WY. This will be her third deployment in less than 12 months.

    Patricia Cook is a Red Cross nurse and will deploy to Missouri to help those affected and Red Cross volunteers deployed to the region with their health and wellness needs. Cook is a volunteer with the Red Cross of Western Colorado and lives in Montrose, CO. This will be her second deployment.

    The Red Cross responds to 66,000 disasters each year. The best way to help people affected by disasters, both big and small, is to donate to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. People can donate to our Disaster Relief Fund at 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) or www.redcross.org, or simply text the word redcross to 90999 to donate $10 through your mobile carrier. Charges will apply to your mobile phone bill the following month.

    To see the latest news about how you can help the Red Cross help the hundreds of people that have lost everything due the recent tornadoes and floods go to:

    http://www.redcross.org/news/article/Severe-Weather-Impacts-Multiple-States-Red-Cross-Responds

    Monday, May 1, 2017

    Red Cross Mile High Youth Advisory Board Seeking Applicants - Deadline May 31, 2017

    2016-2017 Mile High Youth Advisory Board
    Martin Luther King Jr. once said, "Everybody can be great because everybody can serve." The great thing about this statement is it doesn't say "if you're old enough" or "if you're young enough"...it says EVERYBODY. 

    Here in the Mile High area we are calling all students with a passion for community service, taking initiative in their leadership positions, and enthusiasm for working with others to produce a positive means of changing their community.

    The American Red Cross Mile High Youth Advisory Board is looking for rising freshmen and sophomores. As a part of the American Red Cross, accepted applicants will be a part of one of the largest humanitarian organizations in the world at the highest level in Colorado AND Wyoming. 

    Accepted applicants will oversee Red Cross youth activities across the Colorado-Wyoming region, working closely with regional headquarters in Denver. Students will have opportunities to gain professional development, leadership, project planning and facilitation skills. Accepted applicants will be able to work with a wide range of Red Cross personnel, planning activities for fellow youth volunteers, and leading in non-profit setting. Thinking of college? Seeing the American Red Cross name on any application will greatly boost one's chances of being accepted and receiving scholarships!

    Accepted applicants must commit to monthly meetings at Mile High Area Regional Headquarters in Denver (444 Sherman St, Denver, CO 80203), be it by virtual or in-person means. Prospective applicants must also commit to continuous correspondence with other board members through group messaging, conference calls, and/or email between meetings. 

    Interested?
    1. Visit www.redcross.org/volunteer and complete the online orientation.
    2. Register on Volunteer Connection here. Scroll down and click "Youth Application". Follow this process. 
    3. Start your application in the meantime and submit before the deadline, regardless of whether you are done registering.
    More information on the Mile High Youth Advisory Board can be found here, and take a look at www.redcross.org to learn more about the organization, its values, and lines of service.

    The application can be accessed at: MHC Youth Application

    Applications are due on May 31st, 2017, 11:59 MST - Please email Ashley Turner prior to the deadline for additional information regarding the submission process.