The situation with the volcano on the Big Island in Hawaii worsened over the weekend, with three new fissures opening up and more people forced from their neighborhoods. The American Red Cross is on the ground, providing shelter and comfort to those impacted by the Kilauea lava threat.
Officials report there are now 18 fissures spewing out lava and toxic gas, forcing more people from their homes. This is adding to the growing fear of a mass evacuation. Some highways are closed and hundreds are without power. As many as 37 structures are destroyed, including 27 homes. The lava is covering more than 117 acres. It's been more than a week since the first eruption started, and scientists say there's no telling when the volcanic activity will end.
RED CROSS RESPONSE Overnight more than 500 people sought refuge in Red Cross shelters. Almost 80 trained Red Cross disaster workers are operating the shelters and distributing relief items such as blankets, sheets, pillows, futons, towels, masks, comfort kits and almost 6,000 snacks. Red Cross health and mental health volunteers are in the shelters, providing services to more than 560 individuals. In addition, the Red Cross is working with the Salvation Army to provide meals.
Over the weekend, the Red Cross and partners worked together to honor mothers staying in the shelters. The event included lunch, desserts, entertainment, chair massages, Mother’s Day card making, leis and gift bags. Almost 300 people attended in the two shelters. “During this time of uncertainty and hardship in having to evacuate their homes and stay in a shelter, we wanted our mothers to know that they are loved and appreciated,” said Coralie Matayoshi, Hawaii Red Cross CEO.
Partners included Ahiu Hawaii, Hawaii Land Stewards, Kalalau Ranch, doTERRA, Paradise Automotive and Healing Hands Foundation, along with Zippy’s Napoleon Bakery, KTA Superstores, Big Island Candies, Island Naturals and Target.
HOW YOU CAN HELP Please click, text or call to donate to American Red Cross Disaster Relief to help people affected by disasters big and small. Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Every single donation brings hope to those in need. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small.
STAY IN TOUCH People can reconnect with loved ones through both the Red Cross Safe and Well website at redcross.org/safeandwell and by using the “I’m Safe” feature of the Red Cross Emergency App. The Safe and Well site allows individuals and organizations to register and post messages to indicate that they are safe, or to search for loved ones. The site is always available, open to the public and available in Spanish. Registrations and searches can be done directly on the website. Registrations can also be completed by texting SAFE to 78876.
You can download the free Red Cross Emergency App at redcross.org/apps to receive emergency alerts as well as locations of shelters. Users can also find the app in smartphone app stores by searching for the American Red Cross.
STAY SAFE Important Red Cross volcano safety information is available here.
CORPORATIONS HELP The generous donations from members of the Red Cross Annual Disaster Giving Program (ADGP) and the Disaster Responder Program enable the American Red Cross to prepare communities for disasters big and small, respond whenever and wherever disasters occur and help families during the recovery process.
ADGP $1 Million members are: Adelson Family Foundation; American Airlines; Anheuser-Busch Foundation; Anthem Foundation; Bank of America; Brown & Brown, Inc.; Caterpillar Foundation; The Clorox Company; ConocoPhillips; Costco Wholesale; Delta Air Lines; Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation; FedEx; Grainger; The Home Depot Foundation; LDS Charities; Lowe's Companies, Inc.; Mazda North American Operations; Microsoft Corp.; Nationwide Foundation; New Balance Foundation and New Balance Athletics; PepsiCo Foundation; State Farm; Target; VSP Global; Walmart and the Walmart Foundation; and The Walt Disney Company.
ADGP $500,000 members are: Altria Group; American Express; Aon; Capital One; Cisco Foundation; Citi Foundation; Darden Restaurants, Inc. Foundation; Discover; Edison International; Energy Transfer/Sunoco Foundation; Ford Motor Company; General Motors Foundation; Humble Bundle; International Paper; John Deere Foundation; Johnson Controls; LabCorp; Medtronic Foundation; Meijer; Merck Foundation; Mondelēz International Foundation; Procter & Gamble Company; PwC; Ryder; Southwest Airlines; Tata Consultancy Services; TD Ameritrade; The TJX Companies, Inc.; United Airlines; UPS; The Wawa Foundation; and Wells Fargo.
Disaster Responder Program members are: Adobe; AdvoCare International L.P.; Alliance Data; Assurant; AT&T; AvalonBay Communities, Inc.; Avangrid Foundation; AXA; The Ball Foundation; BMW of North America; Boise Paper; CarMax; Cox Automotive; Duke Energy; Entergy Corporation; Farmers Insurance; Harbor Freight Tools Foundation; Hewlett Packard Enterprise Foundation; HP Foundation; HSBC Bank; IBM Corporation; Ingersoll Rand Foundation; The J.M. Smucker Company; Land O’Lakes, Inc.; Mastercard; Morgan Stanley; Neiman Marcus Group; Northrop Grumman Corporation; Northwestern Mutual and the Northwestern Mutual Foundation; Prudential Foundation; Raytheon Company; SC Johnson; Southeastern Grocers Home of BI-LO Harveys Winn Dixie; Standard Textile; Stearns Bank; Toyota; U-Haul International; United Technologies Corporation; USAA; U.S. Bank; and Visa.
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.