The first response to a disaster is the job of the local government's emergency services, supplemented by nearby municipalities, state resources, and volunteer agencies such as the Red Cross.
During a catastrophic disaster, the governor can request for federal resources, which are mobilized through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security
's Federal Emergency Management Agency
(FEMA). These resources can be used for:
Disaster Relief Purposes
- Electrical power
- Food and water
- Search and rescue
- Other basic human needs
Red Cross disaster relief focuses on meeting people's immediate, disaster-caused needs. When a disaster threatens or strikes, the Red Cross provides shelter, food, and health / mental health services to address basic human needs.
In addition to these services, the core of Red Cross disaster relief is assisting individuals and families affected by a disaster in a way that will enable them to resume their normal daily activities independently.
Additional services provided by the Red Cross include:
- Feeding emergency workers
- Handling inquiries from concerned family members outside the disaster area
- Helping those affected by a disaster to access other available resources
- Providing blood and blood products to disaster victims