The Kitsap and Olympic Peninsula Chapter of the American Red Cross is seeking volunteers to help people affected by disasters.
Disaster Action Team responders offer immediate aid throughout Clallam County to people involved in fires and other emergency situations. Assistance typically includes shelter, food and relief supplies; workers also give referrals to local agencies which provide ongoing support to those recovering from disasters.
Nurses and mental health professionals are part of the response teams and are available when needed to aid clients in recovery. Health workers can help replace medications, medical supplies and equipment that are lost during a disaster, as well as offering emotional support for those impacted.
While there is a need for more disaster responders, there are other areas in which volunteers can serve the Red Cross, including:
• Service to the Armed Forces, providing support and assistance to members and veterans of the Armed Forces and their families;
• Home Fire Safety, a partnership with city and county fire departments to install free fire alarms in homes which do not have them and provide education to homeowners about fire safety;
• Disaster preparedness education, offering disaster preparation training for community and church groups, and
• The shelter team, which inspects and evaluates potential mass shelter locations in communities throughout the county and coordinates the supply inventory for use in emergencies.
Training is provided for all Red Cross volunteers. While the focus is on dealing with local disaster response, the classes qualify workers to respond to national disasters.
At least 16 volunteers from Clallam County have served at national disaster sites in recent years.
Members of the current Red Cross team will present introductory programs about the Red Cross at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 23, at the Fire District 3 station, 323 N. Fifth Ave., Sequim.
A second session is set for 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 24, at the Port Angeles Library, 2210 S. Peabody St.
For more information about the Red Cross, call Don Zanon at 360-452-8677 or go online to www.redcross.org/support/volunteer.