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Area Volunteers Help During Carolina Floods

American Red Cross

Red Cross volunteers from northern Illinois have been working all week in South Carolina as much of that state continues to battle disastrous floods.

Patricia Kemp, communications manager for the American Red Cross northern Illinois region, has been there since last Saturday. She says a number of volunteers from Illinois are there to manage shelters and meals for the flood victims, as well as another important aspect of recovery:

“It’s a very emotional experience to be kind of plucked out of your home unexpectedly,” Kemp said. “They’re trained to be a listening ear and a comforting voice to them.”

Flooding may get worse because some rivers have not yet crested.

Kemp says volunteers are still in emergency response mode for much of the state, providing food, shelter, and clothing. And the volunteers will be there through the eventual cleanup.           

“We do it because we truly care about people and really want to help,” she said. “One of the best ways we can help is just showing up and showing people we care. I think that goes a long way.”

Kemp says they are not deploying any more volunteers at this point, and the best thing people who want to help can do is donate money. Then they’ll be able to buy people exactly what they need when they start putting their lives back together.

Susan is an award-winning reporter/writer at her favorite radio station. She's also WNIJ's Perspectives editor, Under Rocks contributor, and local host of All Things Considered.