When times are tough, Montanans rise to the challenge. Thatís what we do. And thatís been the case during a difficult wildfire season that has touched all corners of our state.
Neighbors have helped neighbors, donating hay, offering up a safe place to stay and a warm meal. Theyíve also opened their pocketbooks, donating thousands to Montana Red Cross. This allowed us to provide food, shelter and comfort to those who have been forced to evacuate their homes, sometimes with little warning.
We have opened 16 shelters since July, and our Red Cross volunteers are working around the clock to ensure everyone facing these evacuations is safe and comfortable. Earlier this week, the Red Cross deployed an emergency response vehicle stocked with food, water, blankets and hygiene kits that is traveling around the Seeley Lake and Ovando area to ensure the evacueesí needs are met.
And itís not just those in our own backyard who Montanans have rallied to support. We also helped those hardest hit by Hurricane Harvey, donating thousands more to Red Cross relief efforts in Texas and Louisiana.
We canít thank our donors and volunteers enough for their generosity, felt by so many here at home and across the country. You are truly making a difference.
If you too would like to donate to the Red Cross of Montana visit redcross.org/montana, call 800-272-6668 or send a check to American Red Cross of Montana, 1300 28 th St. S., Great Falls, MT 59405.
Tom Wozniak is board chairman of the American Red Cross of Montana.