Experts from the American Red Cross Los Angeles Region said they expect a busy wildfire season this summer and the organization needs the community’s help volunteering at its shelters.
“Los Angeles is in a position to face a huge disaster with wildfire season and COVID-19 both hitting the community at the same time. We have analyzed the situation and we need help,” said Joselito Garcia-Ruiz, regional disaster program office. “We need the community’s help.”
Garcia-Ruiz added the first step is to ensure that individuals and their loved and your loved ones are prepared, so that volunteers can be available to step up and serve your community. Then sign up to train as a Red Cross volunteer and answer the call to help if the need arises in L.A. County.”
If someone is a registered nurse, licensed practical nurse, licensed vocational nurse, an advanced practice nurse, nurse practitioner, an emergency medical technician, paramedic, MD/MO or a physician assistant with an active, current and unencumbered license, the Red Cross seeks their support. Volunteers are needed in shelters to help access people’s health.
Daily observation and health screening for COVID-19-like illness among shelter residents may also be required. Registered nurses supervise all clinical tasks.
Roles are also available for certified nursing assistants, certified home health aides, student nurses and medical students.
The Red Cross seeks volunteers who can provide care as delegated by a licensed nurse in shelters. This work could include assisting with activities of daily living, personal assistance services, providing health education and helping to replace medications, durable medical equipment or consumable medical supplies.
Red Cross shelters are in need of help, too, because of COVID-19. The Red Cross is placing those needing a safe place to stay in an emergency hotel lodging when possible. If hotel stays aren’t possible, the organization will open traditional shelters.
In addition, the Red Cross is seeking volunteers to care for animals that may be escaping from a wildfire.
For information, visit redcross.org/local/california/los-angeles/about/us/our-work/covid-la.html.