American Red Cross

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"The calls are coming in overwhelmingly and it's very heartwarming to see the community's effort. We're trying to make sure we answer everyone’s questions, and everybody is handled in a timely manner as far as getting fundraising efforts off," says Director of Public Support, Stephanie Brown.

The American Red Cross is working at a feverish pace and this is the largest mobilization the organization has ever experienced...

"We are collaborating to feed 500,000 people a day, operating 270 shelters, but as you can see the need is to have more monetary donations to help," says Brown.

The donations have started to pour in but as the depths of the catastrophe become clearer it seems no amount of money will ever be enough.

Mauro Jones moved to Rockford from New Orleans in May. His entire family, including his daughter and 3 grandchildren still live there and he hasn't heard from anyone.

“I’ve been trying to get communication, but to no avail," says Jones.

Jones wants to volunteer...nearly 3,000 volunteers from around the country have been assigned so far and 900 more are on the way.

"Not just because I'm from there, not just because my family is there, but it's because I want to see what I can do to personally help. I'm not doing good myself right now, but I know they're in dire straits," says Jones.

"I'm heart-warmed by everyones support..I just can't thank everybody enough..and whatever efforts you chose to do, just know that they're going to good use for the Katrina Disaster Relief Fund," says Brown.

A volunteer from the Rock River chapter has been sent down south and more are expected to be mobilized from our area in the coming weeks.

Again, the Red Cross' urgent need right now is monetary donations. To donate you can call 1-800-HELP-NOW or visit