As severe weather moved across the northeast and Mississippi this weekend, over 1,500 people spent Sunday might in Red Cross shelters.
In Mississippi, the Red Cross opened shelters, mobilized volunteers and dispatched relief supplies after powerful tornadoes swept through the area. Hundreds of homes have been damaged, sending over 40 people to Red Cross shelters. The shelters will remain open and mobile feeding will begin later today as Red Cross disaster workers begin to assess the damage from the storm.
In the Northeast, over 1,500 people spend the night in 32 shelters across Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and New York. Local Red Cross chapters are working with federal and local governments to coordinate relief efforts and aid the thousands who have lost power. The Red Cross has served nearly 13,000 meals and snacks, handed out hundreds of relief items, and provided more than 250 health and mental health contacts to people affected by the storm.
With these extreme weather conditions, 160 blood drives have been cancelled, resulting in a shortage of over 6,600 units of blood and platelets. While the Red Cross has pre-positioned blood supplies throughout the affected areas, more donations are needed to ensure an adequate national supply. The Red Cross is encouraging blood and platelet donations in areas unaffected by this storm. While all types are needed, the Red Cross urges those with blood types O positive, O negative, and B negative to make a lifesaving appointment by calling 1-800-RED CROSS or visiting redcrossblood.org.
The Red Cross is also in need of disaster relief donations to provide shelter, food, emotional support, and other assistance to those effected by natural disasters. Please consider making a gift to the Red Cross to help people affected by emergencies like the blizzard and tornadoes by visiting www.redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.