Lufkin Red Cross move towards new stage of recovery - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Lufkin Red Cross move towards new stage of recovery

By Morgan Thomas - bio | email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – The Lufkin American Red Cross staff fielded calls from their service center instead of making the rounds of neighborhoods with tornado damage in their disaster relief vehicles. They are reaching out to the victims in new ways now that the emergency stage is over.

The days immediately following some type of disaster demand emergency relief services and after the tornado the Lufkin Red Cross stepped into high gear.

"[We] passed out tarps, bottled water, things like that," said Glenna Harkness, Service Delivery Manager for the Red Cross.

Now the Red Cross is moving into the next phase of recovery to meet the next round of victim's needs.  They run a spectrum including everything from rent assistance to extra clothing or furniture.

"We just want to get out the word so they know what we're providing," said Harkness.

As the Red Cross moves beyond tarping up homes. They encourage tornado victims to give them a call to make an appointment with staff so they can determine how they can help.

The challenge for the Red Cross is getting tornado victims to come forward in the first place. They can't provide assistance, unless its asked for.

"The client is ultimately responsible for their own recovery. We're just trying to help with their immediate needs," added Harkness.

Now, their main concern is making sure every victim has a safe place to stay.

"If they own their house we want to try and help them with building repairs - make their house liveable so they can stay in their house," said Harkness.

They also want to aid renters whose landlords aren't able to make the necessary repairs required to make their home or apartment liveable.  The Red Cross wants to make the transition into a new place easier.

"We want to work with them to get a first month's rent. Whatever we need to do to take of their immediate needs," said Harkness.

If you were affected by the tornado and still need assistance, especially with housing, you can call the Lufkin American Red Cross at 936-634-6013 to set up a time to consult with staff on how they can help you.

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