Friday, October 27, 2017

Stability During Unpredictability: Palmetto SC Responds to Severe Weather

Mother Nature is unpredictable.  Dark skies can pass over a community without as much as a rain drop. Other days, those clouds can open a Pandora’s Box of weather.  Throughout the upstate on Monday, we all saw the latter.  A tornado ripped through a community.  Heavy rains threatened to flood homes.  Power was out for thousands.

Almost immediately, Red Cross Disaster workers from the Palmetto SC Region jumped into action.  They were ready to go.  They were excited to bring stability to unpredictability.  Together with government partners, volunteers opened (and staffed) a shelter.  Nearly two dozen people spent the night.  They had a dry, safe place to spend the night.

(A Palmetto SC Region volunteer helps a man impacted by Monday's weather)

Red Cross Disaster Workers sat down with dozens of people in that shelter and guided them through the recovery process.  Volunteers unloaded trailers full of supplies to distribute – including clean-up kits, packages of water, meals, snacks, etc.  They even helped one woman receive new eyeglasses.  Another woman needed help getting her prescription medications. She has them now.

51 volunteers distributed 800 meals and snacks.  They handed out 100 clean-up kits and bulk items. They helped more than 60 people impacted by the weather.  Those numbers are increasing by the day.

(Two volunteers wave goodbye as they head out to help communities in need on Wednesday)

Red Cross volunteers did all of that. Not only because of their passion.  But because of you.

The fact is 91 cents of every dollar the Red Cross spends is invested in our humanitarian services and programs.  We mean that. Your donations make our work possible.

The Red Cross is an organization dedicated to alleviating human suffering.  Disaster workers are there to make the worst days of peoples’ lives a little bit better.  Roughly 90% of the Red Cross is volunteer-based.  These are personal heroes who paused their personal lives to jump in to action. 

(A Red Crosser checks one of the trailers parked outside of the Spartanburg shelter)

The work of the Red Cross in the upstate is not finished yet. If you would like to help with our efforts to help our neighbors, please go to

Even the smallest donation can bring the biggest smile to the face of someone who needs help. 

Monday, October 23, 2017

Red Cross Emergency App: Preparedness in Your Hand

With the chance of severe weather throughout South Carolina on Monday, now is a good time to download the Red Cross Emergency App.

It’s easy to do so.  You can either download it from the Apple or Android stores, or you can text "GETEMERGENCY" to 90999.  The app is free to download and free to use.

Once downloaded, there are so many tools at your disposal.  You can set real-time weather alerts for your area, by either typing in your city, zip code or letting the app have access to your location.  You can set up for alerts for severe weather watches/warnings, flash floods tornadoes, earthquakes… the list goes on and on.  There are also preparedness lists for all disasters, telling you what you should do before, during and after the storm.

In the event that shelters are opened, the app will also update to show you where the shelters are.  You can also send a message to your loved ones letting them know you’re safe.  This feature also allows you to share your current location.

This is all about preparedness at your fingertips. Be sure to download the app today to be weather-aware to have expert advice and disaster help readily available. You can also go to to find an assortment of other apps we have to help you stay safe year-round.