Red Cross to hold Disaster Response Training on Saturday

Red Cross to hold Disaster Response Training on Saturday
Red Cross is hosting a training session on Saturday for those who want to serve our community during disasters, especially home fires in the area.

WICHITA FALLS, Texas (TNN) - For the past seven years, Rod Payne, a Red Cross volunteer, has picked up the phone when disaster hit.

Just last month, Payne helped out community members who were affected by the tornado in Charlie.

“We took sandwiches and gave them out to guys who were working on restoring power to peoples homes,” said Payne. “We gave them to a family who lost the roof of their house. We had food for them and their neighbors.”

Payne is one of ten volunteers in the Disaster Action Team for Red Cross who covers 14 counties.

"We've lost some of our volunteers because they aged out or they've just gotten tired and quit," said Linda Stevenson, the disaster program manager for Red Cross.

They’ve been short handed for at least six months, adding more work to the small group.

That is why the nonprofit is hosting a training session on Saturday for those who want to serve our community during disasters, especially home fires in the area.

“Once they become a volunteer, they can pick whatever field they want to go to,” said Stevenson. “{For example} sheltering or public affairs.”

On average, Red Cross responds to about 62,000 disasters a year with most of them being house fires.

"You don't have to be Superman," said Payne. "What you do need to have is a willing heart, a listening ear, and a compassionate mind. That is going to make a big difference in someone's life."

The training is set for Saturday with registration beginning at 9:30 a.m. at their office 1809 5th St.

The session will run until 3 p.m. and lunch will be provided.

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