(Lawrenceburg, Ind.) - Members of the Southeast Indiana Red Cross are on the East Coast helping with the Hurricane Sandy recovery effort.
As of Wednesday, an estimated $70 billion in damage had been done in New York and New Jersey. More than 30,000 homes and businesses were destroyed or damaged in the storm
John Ryle is the director of the Southeast Indiana Red Cross in Lawrenceburg. He is in the midst of a three week stint assisting victims in some of the hardest hit areas.
“There are a lot of people who have been displaced. Their homes, even if they weren’t destroyed or washed away, were so damaged that they’ve been condemned,” Ryle said from the American Red Cross chapter headquarters in Manhattan.
Even a month after the storm wrecked into the eastern seaboard, there is still work to be done. Ryle has been involved in distributing basic needs like food, clothing, diapers, and blankets to victims.
“The Red Cross still has a huge effort going on. I think we’ll have an operation going on here I would think until January in some way, shape, or form,” he said.
Ryle noted the stark difference in how quickly some areas have recovered, while others are still getting on their feet.
“As I came back to where I was staying on Black Friday it amazed me the difference how people were shopping and happy, but I had spent the whole day with people who were left with nothing.”
The greatest need for the American Red Cross is financial support, Ryle said adding that donations can be sent to the southeast Indiana chapter. Donations of pet food have been welcome as well.