Red Cross trains dozens of Miami Valley volunteers for hurricane disaster relief

TROY, Ohio (WDTN) – Some in the Miami Valley aren’t content donating supplies and money to hurricane victims. Tuesday, dozens of volunteered signed up to donate weeks of their time.

The Northern Miami Valley chapter of the American Red Cross hosted a fast-track training course for those interested in working on the front lines of the organization’s disaster relief in hurricane affected regions.

“We’re not first responders, but we’re pretty darn close,” said disaster program manager Randy Earl.

More than two dozen new recruits from a variety of backgrounds explained why they were willing to travel away from home to help complete strangers. Some said they were looking for a fulfilling hobby in retirement, others said they felt compelled to action by the images of massive flooding and destruction.

Donyale Macon of Dayton has a social work background and explained she wanted to put her skills to use.

“I like to do that face-to-face, one-on-one service with people,” Macon said.

Tuesday’s course consolidated five or six classes into one four hour period.

The volunteers could choose to specialize in shelter operations, supply distribution or feeding efforts and once they completed the training, they would be eligible to deploy for two to three weeks.

Red Cross staff said volunteers like the ones who signed up for the course are critical to the organization’s success.

“They do 95 percent of our work,” Earl said. “So we could not do what we do without them.”

You can find more information about volunteer efforts here.

You can also reach the Northern Miami Valley office at 937-332-1414.

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