Red Cross volunteers from WV heading to Texas to assist with Hurricane Harvey

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WDTV)-- The American Red Cross is responding to Hurricane Harvey, the first Category 4 hurricane to make landfall in the United States since Hurricane Charley in 2004. The storm is expected to continue to produce life-threatening rain – estimated to be anywhere between 1 and 3 feet in places – through the middle of next week.

The Red Cross has mobilized a massive relief effort to provide shelter, food and comfort. The organization will continue to be there in the weeks and months ahead, helping residents recover from this massive storm. More than 1,400 people took refuge Friday night in 24 Red Cross and community shelters. Evacuation orders remain in effect in Texas and Louisiana. More than 40 additional shelters are on standby if needed.

Hundreds of trained Red Cross disaster relief workers, truckloads of kitchen supplies as well as tens of thousands of ready-to-eat meals have been mobilized to support the response effort. Trailers full of shelter supplies including cots and blankets—enough to support more than 20,000 people—are scheduled to arrive in Texas.

“The American Red Cross has deployed a number of volunteers from West Virginia, with more leaving in the coming days to support the relief effort. Their willingness to help is inspirational. Whether it’s an individual home fire, a flood or a hurricane, the Red Cross is there thanks to our volunteers and partners,” said Jason Keeling, executive director of American Red Cross Northeast WV.

The Red Cross depends on financial donations to be able to provide disaster relief immediately. Help people affected by Hurricane Harvey by visiting redcross.org, calling 1- 800-RED CROSS or texting the word HARVEY to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from this disaster.

Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from this disaster. The Red Cross honors donor intent. Donors can designate their donation to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts by choosing that option when donating on redcross.org or on 1-800-RED CROSS. The best way to ensure your donation will go to a specific disaster is to write the specific disaster name in the memo line of a check. We also recommend completing and mailing the donation form on redcross.org with your check.

About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross. To learn more, please visit redcrosswv.org, follow us on Facebook (@RedCrossWV) or Twitter (@ARCWV).