Red Cross CEO gives update on disaster response

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It is all hands on deck for the American Red Cross as they continue their response to three major disasters in a matter of weeks.

Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma and most recently Hurricane Maria have all tested the organization's preparedness to respond.

According to Red Cross CEO Gail McGovern, the agency provided shelter to 43,000 people in Texas at one point following Hurricane Harvey. That number is now down to 2,000 but The Red Cross is still hard at work in the southern parts of the state.

"We have been providing food, shelter, mental health counselling, health counselling and now, we’re fanning out into the communities, distributing meals and snacks and cleanup kits," said McGovern. "We’ve already served about 2.7 million meals, just in the state of Texas."

The need however, extends much further than Texas. In the weeks following Harvey, Hurricane Irma hit Florida and Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico.

McGovern says The Red Cross tries to be prepared for the unthinkable and this season, the unthinkable happened. The key to their triple response is having supplies pre-positioned in areas they know are disaster prone.

Furthermore, the Red Cross partners with other organizations including FEMA, The Salvation Army, and state and local governments.

"I believe it’s going to take quite a while for people to get back on their feet. We don’t pack up and leave. We’re in 3,000 counties across the country. Our people live in these areas, a number of them were impacted by the storm," explained McGovern. "So we will be there as long as it takes people to get back on their feet and I think recovery will take quite a long time."

McGovern went on to say they are always looking for volunteers and if you aren't able to donate your time, you can donate money or blood.

For more information on how you can do your part, visit redcross.org.