Friday, September 2, 2016

Windham resident and Red Cross volunteer joins massive relief effort

PORTLAND Last Friday Ruth Lathrop (of Windham) and Joyce Baron (of Athens) departed for Baton Rouge, Louisiana to assist in the massive disaster relief efforts there after the terrible flooding this past month. 

Ruth and Joyce, Red Cross Disaster Response volunteers, will be driving an Emergency Response Vehicle to Louisiana loaded with bottled water, snacks and supply kits. They will be joining the seven volunteers from the State of Maine and the more than 2,600 Red Crossers already in the region. 

Previously from South Carolina and having experienced severe flooding firsthand, Lathrop is a Disaster Red Cross Response volunteer who has been with the organization for the last year and will be on her first deployment. Baron, a Red Cross Disaster Response volunteer, has responded to multiple home fires in the State of Maine and been affiliated with the organization for the last year. 

Part of a fleet of 10 Emergency Response Vehicles from New England, the vehicle from Maine will distribute items to those impacted by the historic and devastating flooding. As people in Louisiana head into week three of unimaginable devastation after floodwaters inundated parts of the state, seven Maine American Red Cross volunteers remain by their side, providing shelter, food, relief supplies and comfort.

Since the flooding began, together with local, state and national partners, the Red Cross has:
Provided more than 52,000 overnight shelter stays;
Distributed more than 210,500 relief items;
Served more than 465,000 meals and snacks; and
Handled more than 24,000 calls from people seeking information and help.

HOW TO HELP: To help people affected by the Louisiana Floods, visit, call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the word LAFLOODS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recovery from these disasters.
Since the beginning of the year, the American Red Cross in Maine has deployed more than 35 responders throughout the country to disaster incidents like the Orlando shooting, Flint, Michigan water contamination crisis, wildfires in California, flooding in West Virginia, Texas and Mississippi. With more than 1,100 volunteers in Maine, the Red Cross responds to disasters big and small, including home fires, hurricanes and blizzards impacting the state. Learn how you can help by visiting,

PICTURED: In front of the Emergency Response Vehicle, Ruth Lathrop is wearing a blue shirt and Joyce Baron has long hair.

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