Local Red Cross has helped over 640 people to date this year

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Red Cross Thursday night assisted seven people, the victims of a fire on Draper Street in Springfield.

Since the first of the year, 643 people, many of them children, have been left homeless by house fires.

Jean Robinson is a disaster services volunteer. She told 22News, “When we arrive we are arriving at the worst day in someone’s life, they need help they need care, they need concern, they need to know there is someone to help them pick up the pieces.”

Once disaster services finds temporary shelter for the victims, they also provide money for clothing.

Novella Morrison does the follow up work to help chart their progress. She finds this very gratifying, “I feel elated because I helped someone to move on with their lives.”

Mary Nathan, Red Cross Disaster Services Manager, told 22News, “You never do get used to going to house fires, you see people’s faces and the look, and they don’t have an idea what to do next.”

Nathan also said the western Massachusetts Red Cross always has a need for donations as well as trying to recruit new disaster service volunteers.

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