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Red Cross volunteers working around the clock at four camps in Italy
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Eric Porterfield, International Communications
April 9, 2009

In response to the powerful earthquake and aftershocks that rocked Italy this week, the American Red Cross has committed $50,000 to support the humanitarian relief activities currently being carried out by the Italian Red Cross.

Aftershocks continue to rock the medieval mountain city of L' Aquila and nearby villages, disrupting rescuers and relief workers. Meanwhile, more than 600 Red Cross volunteers are on the ground feeding, caring for and sheltering survivors.

An Italian Red Cross worker assessing a quiet street in L' Aquila, Italy after a major 6.3 magnitude earthquake struck on April 6. Italian Red Cross

The Italian Red Cross is running a total of four tent camps, with more than 4,000 beds, in Assergi, San Gregorio, Collemaggio and Centicolella. A fifth camp is housing Italian Red Cross disaster response workers.

In Abruzzo province, five Red Cross soup kitchens are in operation, providing a total of 22,000 meals a day. More than 70 Red Cross staff and volunteers are running the kitchen in L' Aquila. The fifth soup kitchen has arrived in the area of Fintec from Verona with a base camp for up to 300 Red Cross workers, bulldozers and a four-wheel drive ambulance.

More than 30 Red Cross ambulances continue to transport the injured to nearby hospitals. The Red Cross is running three advanced medial posts to treat the more severe injuries - two in L' Aquila and one in Paganica - and two triage tents helping with first aid. The Red Cross psychological support teams are working closely with the families hit hardest by this tragedy deal with their losses.

On Wednesday, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies allocated CHF 700,000 (or $613,944) from its Disaster Relief Emergency Fund to support the Italian Red Cross in delivering immediate assistance to 15,000 people.

Rescue workers outside a demolished building in L’Aquila, Italy. Italian Red Cross

You can help the victims of countless crises around the world each year by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross International Response Fund, which will provide immediate relief and long-term support through supplies, technical assistance and other support to help those in need. The American Red Cross honors donor intent. If you wish to designate your donation to a specific disaster, please do so at the time of your donation by mailing your donation with the designation to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243 , Washington, D.C. 20013 or to your local American Red Cross chapter. Donations to the International Response Fund can be made by phone at 1-800-REDCROSS or1-800-257-7575 (Spanish) or online at www.redcross.org.

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