Red Cross sends volunteers, staff to Texas for Hurricane Harvey relief

(WTNH) — Connecticut is lending a helping hand to the people down in Texas affected by Harvey. A great deal of work is being done through the American Red Cross. Staff and volunteers from all over Connecticut have been providing food and shelter to people in need. They’ve been heading to Texas since Thursday.

“It was very impactful,” said Richard Branigan, chief program officer of the Connecticut & Rhode Island American Red Cross. “Category 4 coming ashore was scary to say the least and these are seasoned professionals.”

Hundreds of people from across the country have been helping with the relief effort. There will be a lot for them to do, since Harvey has been so severe. The Red Cross is prepared for a long term response to the storm.

“They’re anticipating thousands of people are going to have sheltering needs and the housing stock in that area has been challenged by previous storms,” said Branigan.

Meanwhile, Connecticut residents who have dealt with severe storms have been concerned for the people in Texas. Jane Cucinelli owns a house on the water in East Haven. She’s dealt with two storms: Irene and Sandy.

“We have storm shutters on the house,” she said. “The storm shutters were closed and what had happened was the waves were so high they knocked the storm shutters into the windows.”

Though the house has been fixed, both storms left a lot of damage behind. Cucinelli knows all too well that storms do hit Connecticut, and she’s ready for whatever Mother Nature might bring.

“I feel bad for them. It’s really tough. It’s really tough,” she said. “If we have to we have a pickup truck, we’ll take whatever we have to, bring the furniture to the second floor.”

More people will be heading down to Texas later this weekend.

If you’d like to donate, you can text HARVEY to 90999 to make a one-time $10 contribution.

For more information visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS.

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