SAN ANTONIO – One year ago, Hurricane Harvey slammed into the Texas Coast. Many homes and businesses were destroyed.
Before, during and after the storm, the American Red Cross has been helping those in need.
During Harvey, the Red Cross provided more than 418,000 overnight shelter stays, 4.5 million meals and snacks, 1.6 million relief items and $230 million in immediate financial assistance to more than 575,000 severely affected households. Not only did the Red Cross help with financial assistance during Harvey, but the organization continues to do so a year later.
"We use those donations to provide shelter, to provide the means for us to deploy volunteers and to provide these services for these people," Red Cross communications manager Libby Castillo said.
Despite all the aid provided, the Red Cross still faced a storm of criticism. One Houston city councilman even went as far as saying not to donate to the organization.
"We take those concerns very seriously, and every disaster is different," Castillo said. "We learn from every disaster."
One lesson learned was figuring out ways to get to smaller communities that were blocked off because of physical barricades and floodwaters.
"We learned from that in that we need to build the capacity of our volunteers in those communities now," Castillo said.
While the Red Cross is still in recovery mode from Hurricane Harvey, it is already preparing for the next possible disaster.
Click here for information on how to apply to be a volunteer with the American Red Cross.