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Tennesseans Help Flood Victims In Louisiana

Posted at 11:02 PM, Aug 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-18 00:10:40-04

As flood waters start to recede, and damage assessments begin in flood ravaged Louisiana, Tennesseans are stepping up to help flood victims.

Wednesday night, the Nashville chapter of American Red Cross held a training class for new volunteers before they head to Louisiana to help out. Training classes are normally scheduled in advance, but the Red Cross organized the training session quickly to help address the growing needs in Louisiana.

“The need is so great right now,” said Sarah Basel, Director of Communications for the American Red Cross in Tennessee. “The training is for people who will be working in shelters in Louisiana.”

Basel said right now the Red Cross has 65 volunteers from Tennessee in Louisiana helping in shelters and cooking meals.  Once flood waters recede, they will visit homes damaged or destroyed by the floods and help people get the financial assistance they need. Around 40 people attended the training Wednesday. The organization hopes to send more people in the next couple weeks.

“I’m happy to help,” said Pete Griffin, a volunteer with the American Red Cross. “ Everyone hopes nothing like this happens, but if it does, it’s good to know there are people who want to help and organizations like the Red Cross that are there to support you.”

Nashville resident Kimberly Daigle, who has family and friends in areas of Louisiana impacted by floods, is also collecting donations for flood victims.

“I’ve been telling people this is my semi-truck size hug to Louisiana,” said Daigle. “I can’t be there in person to help, but I can do this.”

Daigle is in the process of filling a semi-truck with donations ranging from non-perishable food items, to cleaning supplies to building materials. She said she hopes the community will join her cause and help people in need.

“This is an opportunity for Nashville to give back,” said Daigle. “Louisiana did so much to help when the floods hit here.”

To make a donation to Daigle’s cause, you can stop by the Park Avenue Church at 4300 Charlotte Ave. in Nashville Friday, Aug. 19 from 4-8 p.m.  She plans to load up the semi-truck before having someone drive it to Louisiana on Saturday.

For more information on volunteering with the American Red Cross visit www.redcross.org