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Red Cross responds to massive wildfire in California, devastating West Virginia floods

Jun 26, 2016

WASHINGTON, DC - The American Red Cross is responding to two massive disasters in the East and West, helping people who have lost everything to the raging wildfires in California and the devastating flooding in West Virginia.

"Our volunteers are helping people affected by the wildfires out west and the terrible flooding in West Virginia," said Brad Kieserman, vice president, Disaster Services Operations and Logistics for the Red Cross. "We have more than 400 Red Cross workers helping now and are monitoring the situations with local and state officials to make sure people get the help they need."

HOW TO HELP These are large relief responses and the Red Cross needs the public's support now. Those who would like to help people affected by disasters like flooding, wildfires and countless other crises can make a donation to Red Cross Disaster Relief. People can donate by visiting, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. These donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small.

Financial donations are the quickest way to get people the help they need. In California, if someone wishes to donate clothes or household items, they can be dropped off at Goodwill Industries of South Central California. The Red Cross is partnering with them to issue vouchers to support those who have had to evacuate. Information about where items can be donated is available here.

WEST VIRGINIA Thousands of people are without power and gas service. As many as 60 roads are closed to flooding and flood damage. There are almost 20 Red Cross and community shelters open across the affected counties where hundreds of people are taking refuge from the flooding. Red Cross workers are providing meals, relief supplies and other assistance to those affected as well as meals for first responders. Red Cross disaster mental health workers are helping people cope. Health workers are helping to replace needed items like prescription medications and eyeglasses. The Red Cross is monitoring the situation and working with state and local officials and partners to help ensure people get the help they need. Important Red Cross flood safety information is found here.

CALIFORNIA The Erskine Fire in Kern County started Friday and firefighters have been unable to contain the blaze which has already destroyed 150 homes, burned 35,000 acres and forced almost 3,000 people to evacuate. Red Cross workers have shelters open where more than 130 people spent Friday night. The Red Cross is providing food and relief supplies, along with health services and helping people cope with a very difficult situation. People in the path of the fire can find vital safety information here.

SAFE AND WELL People can register on the Red Cross Safe and Well website so loved ones can see their situation. Those who can't access a computer can call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) and a Red Cross operator can help them register. They can also update their Facebook and Twitter status through the Safe and Well website or visit on their smart phone and click on the "List Yourself as Safe and Well" or "Search for friends and family" link.

DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY APP People should download the free Red Cross Emergency App to receive emergency alerts and information about what to do in case of flooding, wildfires and other disasters, as well as locations of shelters. The App also includes emergency first aid information and a Family Safe feature which allows people to instantly see if loved ones are okay. The free Emergency App is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to

CORPORATIONS HELP The generous donations from members of the Red Cross Annual Disaster Giving Program (ADGP) and the Disaster Responder Program enable the Red Cross to prepare communities for disasters big and small, respond whenever and wherever disasters occur and help families during the recovery process.

ADGP $1 Million members are: American Airlines; Anheuser-Busch Foundation; Anthem Foundation; Boise Paper; Caterpillar Foundation; Costco Wholesale; Delta Air Lines; Disney; Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation; FedEx Corporation; The Home Depot Foundation; Humble Bundle; LDS Charities; Lowe's Companies, Inc.; Mazda North American Operations; Merck Foundation; Nationwide Foundation; State Farm; Target; UPS; VSPSM Vision care for life; and Walmart and the Walmart Foundation.

ADGP $500,000 members are: 3M; Altria Group; American Express; Aon; Bank of America; BNY Mellon; Capital One; Cisco Foundation; Citi Foundation; ConAgra Foods Foundation; Darden Restaurants Foundation; Discover; Edison International; Farmers Insurance; Ford Motor Company; Grainger; John Deere Foundation; Johnson Controls; Medtronic; Meijer; Mondelńďz International Foundation; National Grid; PepsiCo Foundation; Prudential Foundation; Southwest Airlines; Sprint; Sunoco; The TJX Companies, Inc.; United Airlines; United Technologies Corporation; Visa; Wawa; and Wells Fargo.

Disaster Responder Program members are: Alcoa; Almost Family; Astellas USA Foundation; AT&T; AvalonBay Communities, Inc.; AXA; Ball Foundation; BHP Billiton; CarMax; The Clorox Company; Cox Automotive; Duke Energy; Entergy Corporation; General Motors Foundation; Hewlett Packard Enterprise Foundation; Hi-Rez Studios; HP Company Foundation; IBM Corporation; IKEA; Ingersoll Rand Foundation; Interstate All Battery Center; Land O'Lakes, Inc.; Marsh & McLennan Companies; MetLife Foundation; Morgan Stanley; Neiman Marcus Group; New Balance Foundation; Northrop Grumman Corporation; Northwestern Mutual and the Northwestern Mutual Foundation; Procter & Gamble Company; PSEG Foundation; PuroClean Disaster Recovery; Red Heart Yarns; Residence Inn by Marriott; Ryder; ScriptRelief; Sealed Air; Servpro Industries, Inc.; Southeastern Grocers Home of BI-LO Harveys Winn Dixie; Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Foundation, Inc.; T O Y O T A; U.S. Bank; and U-Haul International.

Red Cross responds to massive wildfire in California, devastating West Virginia floods

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