When the city of Thayer and the larger Ozarks region went through the devastating ice storm of 2009, cots and blankets were in heavy demand.
"We need to have supplies strategically placed throughout the state to be able to respond quickly to natural disasters," said Janice Travis, Region G Director for the Red Cross. "During the last ice storm, we had to wait on supplies to be brought in from as far away as Springfield. Thanks to the Thayer Police Department, we now have 50 cots and a palette of water on site and ready for an emergency."
Region G also has new shelter trailers that were purchased with Homeland Security money. Two of the trailers will be housed in Texas and Carter counties. One of the trailers will be located at the Red Cross office in Van Buren and can be moved around the area as needed. The other one will be located in Houston (Texas County) at the Sheriff's Dept.
Both trailers contain 100 cots, 200 blankets, 100 disposable pillows, 100 comfort kits (containing personal hygiene items) and a shelter kit. The trailer can be deployed in a matter of minutes and is available to any county that has a need for an Emergency Shelter.
Travis also expressed the need for volunteers to be trained to help in the shelters during a disaster. "We are always in need of additional volunteers who are willing to come out and assist their communities in a time of need," said Travis. "It's important to get as many folks as possible trained before an emergency occurs, so we can be better prepared to handle whatever comes our way."
Anyone interested in becoming a shelter volunteer can contact the Greater Ozarks Chapter of the American Red Cross, Region G, at 573-323-4007.