Red Cross gives Central Valley an inside look at River Park event

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- When disasters strike, the American Red Cross responds.

In a matter of hours they can set up a shelter for people impacted.

On Saturday morning that's exactly what they did, at an event at River Park to raise awareness and funds.

They gave people an inside look.

"We hope no one ever has to stay in. But it tells our public here in Fresno what it would be like if you had to stay in a shelter and the comfort that the Red Cross provides," said Rob Schumann of the Central Valley American Red Cross.

They call it Shelter of Hope. It shows you everything from the sleeping area to the feeding station.

The people you see running it are all volunteers. In fact, over 90% of the people who come in to help are not getting paid.

"So much of what they do at the Red Cross as volunteers come from the heart," Schumann said.

Jake Gonzales is a volunteer and feels fortunate to be able to help others.

"You get to see people at their worst and it makes you feel better when you walk away knowing that you touched them a little bit," he said.

They are in need of volunteers for the Central Valley.

"You can be in a chapter office where you are answering phones. You can be out there talking to servicemen's families. You can be out there being on the disaster action team. It could be installing free smoke alarms in underserved communities. There are so many ways to bring your heart to the Red Cross and we would love to have you," Schumann said.

But if you cannot volunteer your time, you can always donate.

A $5 donation can buy a blanket and just for a couple dollars, they can buy hygiene kits.

To learn more, click here.
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