By Katie Turpen
From a fire that destroys one family’s home to a typhoon that kills thousands one organization is the definition of the helping hand. The American Red Cross responds to approximately 70,000 disasters each year. They provide shelter, food, health and mental health services to those who have lost hope. They bring a feeling of reassurance to communities who desperately need it.
When a large disaster strikes, the news floods our media, keeping the situation vivid in our minds. We immediately think about how to help. Whether it be tragedies such as Sandy Hook or the Boston Marathon or horrific tornadoes in Oklahoma and Alabama, or the typhoon in the Philippines, the brokenness often weighs heavy on our hearts as it is all we hear on the radio, read in the newspaper and watch on television.
However, weeks after the tragedies are over, they start to fade from our minds. Our willingness to help fades with the newsprint as our own distractions take over our lives. But what about all those people still hurting? There are still broken lives that need to be rebuilt and that can takes months, even years.
That’s where the American Red Cross comes in. They don’t just help as soon as disaster strikes, they make a commitment. For example, six months after the Oklahoma tornadoes the Red Cross is still helping. They have set up recovery centers and are making sure the people who lost so much have the tools they need to rebuild.
As the month of January winds down and we are in the middle of Winter and potentially facing more cold/disasters, it is important to remember all those out there who need our helping hand.
TO DONATE to the American Red Cross click here:http://www.redcross.org/charitable-donations?campname=donate&campmedium=aspot_unassigned
Whether it is donating or volunteering your time you can be a part of the healing…in big disasters and small.
Photo Credit: American Red Cross
(c) 2013 Katie Turpen. Revised and reprinted by permission, 2016.