Red Cross Essay

1518 Words Mar 30th, 2012 7 Pages
Paperclips. Usually, they hold paper together, but not in Linda Kimble’s case. Hurricane Katrina left her and many others in Monroe, Louisiana homeless. "I was still in New Orleans when Katrina hit," recants Linda. "I was in a hotel with other evacuees downtown and the wind kept slamming a door." Fortunately, they could find safety at the Red Cross run shelter in Monroe. Paperclips is the introduction to all of this because that's the nickname hurricane survivors gave to the volunteers at the shelter. The Paperclips worked with hurricane survivors to provide daily support and to help survivors orient themselves with their surroundings. Linda draws together the final strands of the connection, "Paperclips hold paper and hold people …show more content…
With such a high number of volunteers, it becomes difficult to train and teach them all, possibly leading to such problems involving loss of quality control with collecting and transferring blood. Unfortunately, the solution to the next problem is more volunteers. Perhaps the issue with which the ARC fails the most is resolving their work force, specifically volunteers. The way the ARC handled disaster relief after Hurricane Katrina, clarifies their shortcomings. After the land fall of Katrina, the ARC mobilized 170,000+ relief workers and had gathered 2,000 volunteers before Katrina even hit. They opened 1,470 shelters and registered 3.8 million overnight stays. Yet, these statistics are not as pristine as one might think. Several complaints were voiced about various, mostly busy ARC phone lines, inadequate assistance, or assistance that came too late, and survivors unable to find ARC relief stations due to hard to reach locations. More criticisms alleged poor communications and bureaucratic issues. The ARC acknowledged all these problems saying they simply were not prepared to deal with such a large disaster, and, therefore, the complexity of the relief tasks was unprecedented, and they needed a lot more volunteers than they thought. Not that this was too much of a problem, they received an numbers of Americans who wanted to volunteer. Soon enough, they were processing over 35,000 claims a day. But this mass

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