American Red Cross

American Red Cross

The American Red Cross is looking for more volunteers to help in disaster zones and offering expedited training to help get people to where help is needed most.

Trish Burnett, with the Red Cross, said the organization currently needs more people to staff shelters across the South.

"Hurricane Harvey Flooding - 8/26/17 to ?" by Flickr user Jill Carlson ( / (CC x 2.0)

Hurricane Harvey has prompted an outpouring of donations, but a common concern is whether these contributions are providing the most bang for the buck.

Paul Logli is President of the United Way of the Rock River Valley. He said since relief efforts are focused on long term recovery, cash donations are the most effective.

“Certainly dry clothing for the people that first come in is important," he said, "but usually the stuff pouring in the area is far in excess of immediate demand and not very usable.”

American Red Cross

Red Cross volunteers from northern Illinois have been working all week in South Carolina as much of that state continues to battle disastrous floods.

Patricia Kemp, communications manager for the American Red Cross northern Illinois region, has been there since last Saturday. She says a number of volunteers from Illinois are there to manage shelters and meals for the flood victims, as well as another important aspect of recovery:

Mike Moen/WNIJ

Local Red Cross chapters are finding ways to survive lean times. The branch that serves several northern Illinois counties is no exception. The agency is now asking volunteers to do more to make sure it’s ready in the event of a crisis.