Red Cross volunteer Walter Wasowski is headed to Mississippi, where he will be part of Red Cross disaster relief operations in the wake of tornadoes that recently struck in that state. Wasowski, of Middletown, departs today for Mississippi.
Wasoski joins hundreds of Red Cross volunteers working in states across the southern and southeastern U.S., where damaging spring storms have resulted in damaging tornadoes and flooding. A total of 430 people spent Tuesday night in 29 Red Cross and community shelters in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida, Kansas, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Tennessee. Through Tuesday night, the Red Cross had already served nearly 9,000 meals and snacks to people affected by this severe weather outbreak. Red Cross workers are also in affected communities providing clean up supplies; health and mental health services; blankets; tarps; and personal care items.
Wasowski will assist with disaster assessment, working with Red Cross teams that will help to identify damage related to the tornadoes and review current conditions. “The information Walt and others gather helps us make decisions on community needs and helps us focus service delivery,” said American Red Cross Rhode Island Chapter Executive Director Paula Montgomery. “Disaster responses are constantly evolving. Walt is joining a team of people that have been at work since before the storms to plan for and provide emergency shelter, food, relief supplies and emotional support. His experience in disaster assessment will help us support communities dealing with the aftermath of these destructive tornadoes.”
Montgomery said Wasowski is the first Red Cross volunteer from Rhode Island deployed to support this disaster response. “We have a great team of experienced volunteers here in Rhode Island and we have reached out to ask their availability if more people are needed. We stand ready to help our neighbors near and far when disaster strikes.”
HOW TO HELP: Those who would like to help people affected by disasters like tornadoes, floods and other crises can make a donation to American Red Cross Disaster Relief. People can donate by visiting www.redcross.org, 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.