The Northern New England Region of the American Red Cross continues to deploy volunteers to large-scale disasters around the country. Faced with wildfires, hurricanes and other disasters, the humanitarian organization needs additional volunteers to help people in urgent need.

For the past several weeks, the Red Cross has been helping thousands of people whose lives have been uprooted by the Midwest Derecho, the relentless wildfires in the West, Hurricane Laura and catastrophic flooding caused by Hurricane Sally.

Ruth Lathrop of Windham, is among the more than 5,000 Red Crossers who have supported disaster relief efforts on the ground or virtually since Aug. 19.

A seasoned disaster responder, Lathrop recently returned home after a deployment where she distributed emergency supplies to Hurricane Laura survivors in Louisiana. She was part of an effort that went into communities that were without power or water to deliver items water and items like shovels and clean-up kits.

On Thursday, she recalled the gratitude of a woman who was picking up bits of insulation with her bare hands.

“You give someone a pair of gloves and they act like you’ve given them gold,” Lathrop said. “It was really rewarding. We were giving them something they need.”

Thousands of volunteers like Lathrop are working tirelessly across the country to provide food, shelter, comfort and other support to people in disaster survivors.

Many of these dedicated humanitarians have been affected themselves by the ongoing wildfires or hurricanes. On one night, the Red Cross and its partners cared for nearly 30,000 people in emergency lodgings.

Dozens of deadly wildfires continue to rage in the West, forcing tens of thousands of people to evacuate and consuming more than 5 million acres.

A few weeks ago, Hurricane Laura – one of most powerful storms to ever hit the U.S. – left terrible devastation across Louisiana and east Texas just days after Tropical Storm Marco affected the same region. Hurricane Sally made landfall as a powerful and slow-moving Category Two storm, bringing catastrophic flooding to parts of Alabama and Florida.

The Red Cross needs to add to its volunteer ranks to support disaster relief efforts locally and around the country. Volunteers are needed to help staff shelter reception, registration, feeding, dormitory, information collection and other vital tasks. Review the most urgently needed volunteer positions at

If interested in helping people in the face of disaster as a volunteer or want to learn more, contact Volunteer Services for the Northern New England Region at or 800-464-6692.

The Red Cross depends on financial donations to provide disaster relief immediately. Donate to help now by visiting, calling 800-RED-CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

The Red Cross urges eligible individuals in parts of the country unaffected by these disasters to give blood or platelets to help ensure a sufficient blood supply for patients in need. Schedule an appointment to donate by using the Red Cross Blood Donor app, visiting or calling 800-RED CROSS.

For more information, visit or visit us on Facebook at @RedCrossNNE, Instagram at @RedCrossNNE or at Twitter at @ARC_NNE.