Beyond the Headlines: Northland Red Cross efforts in 2017 - KBJR 6 Your Weather Authority: News, Weather & Sports

Beyond the Headlines: Northland Red Cross efforts in 2017

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Duluth branch of the American Red Cross Duluth branch of the American Red Cross

It's been more than three months since Hurricane Harvey battered south Texas, and for many of those whose homes were destroyed or damaged there is still a great deal of work to be done.

It's a workload those with the American Red Cross know all too well. In the days leading up to, and the weeks after the devastation left in Harvey's wake, Red Cross volunteers from across the country--and right here, in the Northland--were responding.   

The Northland chapter's Executive Director Dan Williams says these volunteers are willing to set aside what's going on in their lives, and step into the role of being there for others. 

"There's the helping people," says Williams, "but there's also helping people through the first few days of the stress and the fear and the uncertainty of not knowing what's there with their home or their neighborhood or their job."

Just days after Harvey made landfall, Florida was bracing for impact from Hurricane Irma. Once again, the Northland Red Cross was ready for action.

"What typically happens is you try to preposition as many resources as you can because typically airports are closed, transportation is difficult," says Williams, "So, getting people in either had to happen before or after--not really during a big storm like that."

But wind and water aren't the only things keeping the Red Cross volunteers busy in 2017.

The fight against the historic wildfires in California continues into the new year. A break in the winds helped crews over the weekend before Christmas, but not before new evacuations and the destruction of multi-million dollar homes.

To put some perspective on how busy of a year it has been with natural disaster relief, Dan Wolfe sits down with Dan Williams of the Northland Chapter of the Red Cross to talk about the year's efforts.

To learn more about volunteer opportunities with the Red Cross, click here. 

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