Red Cross will hold volunteer training for disaster relief operations

The volunteer training sessions will be Sept. 14 and 15 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Volunteers must stay the whole time.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – The outpouring of support from here in the Valley for those affected by Hurricane Harvey in Texas and those getting ready for Hurricane Irma in Florida has been incredible.

But there are even more ways you can help.

Karen Conklin, executive director of the Red Cross of the Mahoning Valley, said the Red Cross is looking to train new volunteers to respond to disasters.

The Red Cross will hold a “zero to hero” training session on Sept. 14 and 15 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Anyone who would like to donate their time and potentially head to Texas and Florida to help are encouraged to attend.

Volunteers must be present at the session for the whole duration. The Red Cross hopes to have at least 30 people trained.

“We are starting to get a lot of people calling in that are interested in being able to deploy to help in those disaster areas,” said Kristen Gallagher, disaster program specialist at the Red Cross.

As of 4 p.m. Tuesday, the WYTV Red Cross Telethon raised $78,926 for those affected by Hurricane Harvey. Red Cross is still accepting monetary donations.

Also — the Lake to River Red Cross sent a Boardman staff member to Florida to prepare shelters for Hurricane Irma. She will be there for two weeks.

Three operations are running from the Red Cross — Relief efforts for Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and a local operation to respond to house fires.