Tennessee Red Cross responds to Louisiana as hurricane season begins

Dire need for disaster response volunteers
Posted at 9:05 PM, Jul 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-11 23:46:08-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Hurricane season is upon us, and while a potential tropical storm strengthens offshore, Tennessee American Red Cross volunteers are wasting no time in their preparations. Eleven volunteer and staff members are being deployed this week.

Joel Sullivan, the regional executive for the American Red Cross of the Tennessee Region, says while the team is entering hurricane response much earlier this year, preemptive measures are underway.

“Our Tennessee team is on alert and we are currently recruiting volunteers and staff members who will respond to what may soon be Hurricane Barry,” said Sullivan.

The team will first make its way to Louisiana until the storm forms. From there they'll assess the flood damage, which is expected to be an issue.

“Flooding will definitely be an issue as some areas affected are expected to receive more than two feet of rain over a three-day period, and the ground is already saturated,” he added.

The Red Cross has already had an exceptionally busy year. Volunteers helped victims of the Tennessee floods back in March, and remained busy in May when 500 tornadoes swept through the Midwest. Tennessee Red Cross volunteers were there through it all, however, the past six months have proved taxing on both manpower and finances for the humanitarian organization.

“We need to recruit more volunteers and find donors who are willing to help people through their work and support, the time is critical now,” Sullivan said.

More information on how you can help the American Red Cross of the Tennessee Region as a volunteer or through donations can be found here.