Tagged: natural disasters

American Red Cross Services for Military Members and Families

Posted by Debi Teter
ARC-helps-military-families-during-disastersYou might know the American Red Cross as “those people who do the blood drives,” but like the military, they have a rich history of service. A national service organization for more than a century, the 700 locally-supported chapters of the American Red Cross has helped more than 15 million people each year people mobilize to help their neighbors. These volunteers learn valuable skills to prepare for and respond to emergencies in homes, communities, and around the world. In addition, almost four million people also donate blood each year through the Red Cross, making it the largest supplier of blood and blood products in the United States. The American Red Cross also maintains a strong commitment to serving all members of the military, whether active-duty, Guard, and Reserve service members or their immediate family members. They are an important resource for our service members and those they love. American Red Cross services for military members and their families include: Emergency communications Communicating important news with family members is one area the Red Cross supports. Whether it’s to share the birth of a child or the loss of a loved one, the immense worldwide network maintained by the Red Cross  helps keeps military personnel anywhere (including on ships at sea, at embassies, and in isolated military units)linked  with their loved ones. If you need to send an emergency message, contact the Red Cross and have the following information on hand:
  • service member’s full name, rank, Service branch, Social Security number, and military address
  • information about the deployed unit and the location of the rear detachment unit (for deployed service members only)
  • name, phone number, and relationship of person in the city or town where the emergency occurred (to provide more information if required)
  • name and contact number for hospital or funeral home to verify the emergency
  Social services and disaster assistance The Red Cross provides counseling, family support and help with VA appeals for service members and their families. There are some chapters that offer special courses or support groups for military families to help themselves and others deal with the psychological challenges of the deployment cycle.   Direct support to service members Red Cross staff members deploy overseas to provide direct emergency communications. In overseas locations, the Red Cross may offer respite from harsh conditions and bring a little bit of home to the troops by operating a twenty-four-hour canteen service with coffee, cold drinks, snacks, games, videos, and books. Red Cross teams also visit patients in clinics and hospitals.   Military family members who wish to volunteer with the Red Cross can also find opportunities such as:
  • positions as greeters, hospital guides, wheelchair escorts, patient chaperones, and pharmacy aids working at medical facilities in areas such as physical therapy, the emergency room, pediatrics, dermatology, and radiology
  • volunteer caseworker positions at Red Cross locations
  • a Dental Assistant Program (DENTAC) for training as a dental technician
  • pet-therapy volunteer positions to cheer up patients in military hospitals
  • blood donation center positions to assist with blood drives
  • disaster-response positions to provide relief support
  The American Red Cross is accessible in a number of ways:
  • Active-duty service members stationed in the US and their immediate family members may call the Red Cross Armed Forces Emergency Service (AFES) Centers for help at any time 877-272-7337.
  • Members of the Guard and Reserve, retirees, and extended family members can access services through their local Red Cross Chapter, listed in local telephone directories and in the chapter directory.
  • Overseas personnel stationed on military installations may call installation operators or the on-installation Red Cross office.
  #AmericanRedCross #RedCross #MilitaryFamilies #Volunteer  

Resources for Military Families Affected by the Moore, Oklahoma Tornado

Posted by Jason Van Steenwyk

aftermath of Moore, OK tornadoThe Military Family Association has published a resource page for servicemembers and family members affected by the tragic tornado disaster that befell the community of Moore, Oklahoma on Monday.

The tornado struck near Tinker Air Force Base. A number of Air Force families may have been severely affected and/or rendered homeless. Base personnel who need immediate assistance with food, clothing or emergency financial assistance can contact the Tinker Family Readiness Center at 405-739-2747, 405-736-3813, or 405-736-3847. 

You can also call these numbers to volunteer. The Family Readiness Center is in the process of organizing work and relief teams to go out and assist Air Force personnel and their families in need. Alternatively, you can register as a volunteer at this link.

If you’re an Air Force member affected by the storm, visit AFPAAS and fill out a needs assessment. This will inform the Air Force that you’re accounted for and alert them to any supports or services you or your family may need.

 

USAA Field Assistance Teams

If you have insurance from USAA, you can contact one of two emergency assistance teams already on site at these locations.

First Baptist Church of Moore

301 NE 27th St. (I-35 and NE 27th)?Moore, OK 73160?Hours: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Everyday ?Services: Claims

Wal-Mart Supercenter

501 SW 19th St.?Moore, OK 73160?Hours: 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Today ?7 a.m. – 7 p.m. Thursday and everyday until further notice.?Services: Claims

Members can report claims by using USAA’s Mobile App on their iPad, Android and/or iPhone smartphones, online at usaa.com/help, or by calling 1-800-531-USAA (8722).

 

Emergency Prescription Refills

If you are a TRICARE beneficiary and you need an emergency refill of your prescription (because, for example, your home was destroyed), take your prescription bottle, if you have it, to any TRICARE retail network pharmacy. To find a network pharmacy near you, click here. Alternatively, you can call Express Scripts at 1-877-363-1303.

These procedures apply to the counties for which the Governor of Oklahoma has declared a state of emergency. As of this writing, those counties are Cleveland, Lincoln, McClain, Oklahoma, Pottawatomie. Emergency refill procedures are in place for TRICARE beneficiaries through June 17.

If you lost your military ID, you’ll need to get it replaced at the nearest DEERS enrollment office. If you lost your TRICARE enrollment card, call TRICARE customer service 800-444-5445. 

More information is available from the State of Oklahoma here.

Tornado Relief for Oklahoma

Posted by Debi Teter

Red Cross Oklahoma tornado relief

In light of the devastating tornadoes that have torn communities in Oklahoma apart in the last two days, we would like to remind everyone that you can send a $10 donation to the Red Cross Disaster Relief fund via text message, by texting the word REDCROSS to 90999. As in the case with other donations via mobile, the donation will show up on your wireless bill, or be deducted from your balance if you have a prepaid phone. You need to be 18 or older, or have parental permission, to donate this way. (If you change your mind, text the word STOP to 90999.)

Our prayers are with the victims, their families and friends, and their communities as they continue search and rescue efforts.

Read the statement from the Red Cross here.