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Red Cross Responds to Flood-ravaged Communities in Philippines and Vietnam
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Preparing to Respond to Next Round of Storms
By Adria Spinelli, International Communications
September 29, 2009
Rescuers assist residents from floodwaters caused by Typhoon Ketsana in the Philippines where the Red Cross is responding to many people who are affected.
Rescuers assist residents from floodwaters caused by Typhoon Ketsana in the Philippines where the Red Cross is responding to many people who are affected.
Photo Credit: REUTERS/Erik de Castro
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The Philippines Red Cross is still fully engaged in emergency relief operations and has not indicated their capacity to accept inquiries about the status of an individual in the Philippines. For inquiries about relatives living and who have citizenship in the Philippines, please try to keep calling or contacting other family members who live nearby. Inquiries concerning U.S. citizens living or traveling in the Philippines should be referred to the U.S. Department of State, Office of Overseas Citizens Services, at 1-888-407-4747 or 202 647-5225.

As the Philippines recovers from Typhoon Ketsana, Vietnam is currently feeling the brunt of the storm. In Vietnam the Red Cross evacuated 160,000 people in advance of the storm’s landfall and has pre-positioned search and rescue teams as well as relief supplies to respond quickly once the storm passes.

While Ketsana drenched the Philippines, the outer edges of the storms caused flooding in Vietnam, which severely damaged agriculture and directly affected 60,000 people.  In both countries thousands of volunteers were mobilized to evacuate people, and carry out needs assessments, as well as provide food and water to survivors.

 The Philippines Red Cross is performing search and rescue activities, operating shelters, serving hot meals, delivering blankets and other relief supplies to people affected by the storm.

“Thousands of volunteers have been working around the clock since the storm hit the Philippines on Saturday,” says Alex Mahoney, disaster manager for Asia for the American Red Cross. “Search and rescue teams are providing relief and emotional support to the traumatized families as well as first aid to the sick and injured.”

Forecasters projected Ketsana to have torrential winds up to about 90 miles per hour as it passed over Vietnam.  Due to the normal monsoon season rainfall and flooding plus the severity of this storm, there is a possibility for a substantial amount of damage and need.

While both countries cope with the aftermath of Typhoon Ketsana, locally known as Typhoon Ondoy, two additional storms are forming nearby, one of which is projected to hit the previously affected portion of the Philippines. The Red Cross there is already making preparations.

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. Donations to the International Response Fund can be sent to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, D.C. 20013 or made by phone at 1-800-REDCROSS or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish) or online at www.redcross.org.

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