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American Red Cross offers assistance

September 17, 2005

Approx 2 minutes

Radio Announcement
Hispanic listeners
(for translation into Spanish)

Hurricane Katrina Relief - Louisiana
Public Affairs Desk, Baton Rouge
571-226-8062 Media Only


Those people affected by Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana are reminded that the American Red Cross offers immediate food, shelter and lodging resources to meet their immediate needs. The Red Cross began offering emergency financial assistance for disaster-caused needs on September 11 in Louisiana. Evacuees should call the 24-hour toll-free hotline at 1-800-975-7585 to speak to a Red Cross representative for assistance.

The Red Cross has given hope to tens of thousands of people by meeting their emergency needs, providing them shelter, hot meals, and compassionate support. The Red Cross has opened nearly 900 shelters across the country and has fed and housed more than 2 million survivors since Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast. All American Red Cross shelters are a “safe environment.”

In addition to meeting basic food and shelter needs, the Red Cross is providing financial assistance to hurricane survivors in a variety of ways, including client assistance cards, vouchers, checks and cash. There is no time limit on applying for financial assistance. It is completely free with no obligation for repayment. Assistance is based on family size and is intended for those who live in the zip codes that were hardest hit by Hurricane Katrina only.

Callers are asked to be patient. The hotline is open 24 hours a day, but call volume is high and there may be a long wait on hold until a Red Cross representative is available. While the Red Cross has committed an immense amount of resources to meet these emergency demands, the size of this disaster means that there are hundreds of thousands of families in need. Call volume is generally lowest during the overnight hours.

Again, evacuees and victims are encouraged to call the 24-hour toll-free hotline at 1-800-975-7585. When calling the hotline, be prepared to provide this information to the Red Cross representative on the phone:

  • your name
  • your address and zip code where you lived when the hurricane hit
  • the names and ages of your family members
  • where you are staying now
  • your needs for food, shelter, financial assistance, etc.

Optional Tag - additional 45 seconds.

All American Red Cross disaster assistance is free, made possible by the voluntary donations of time and money from the American people. You can help the victims of this disaster and thousands of other disasters across the country each year by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, which enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, counseling, and other assistance to those in need. To make a Donation, call 1-800-257-7575. Contributions to the Disaster Relief Fund may also be sent to your local American Red Cross chapter or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013. Internet users can make a secure online contributions by visiting .

Last updated December 29, 2005 2005, Allen Crabtree