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Orlando Red Cross sends volunteers like Rene Leins to Kentucky to help with disaster relief after deadly tornadoes

Rene Leins. Photo: Duhane Lindo of the Red Cross.

Orlando Red Cross volunteers are shipping out to Kentucky to help the survivors of a tornado that killed more than 60 people in the state. 

Rene Leins is one of the volunteers leaving the Orlando International Airport on Monday for Kentucky. 

Leins has been a volunteer for a little over a year and has received online disaster training to prepare her for this situation. She says the group she’s working with will be responsible for feeding.

“So what that means is we’ll need to make sure that the people in the shelters, that have been set up, make sure they have all of their meals and of course, their snacks and water. As well as the emergency response vehicles that the Red Cross uses to go out to the more remote areas.”

Leins says her deployment could last a couple of weeks. 

“Typically our deployments are for two weeks. So this is a two-week assignment. There may be an opportunity to extend. Sometimes there is. If that opportunity does arise, then I would likely extend for as long as they need me.”

Leins says it’s important for her to be with these families who are experiencing grief and the loss of their homes ahead of the holidays. 

President Joe Biden says he’ll visit Kentucky on Wednesday to talk about disaster response efforts there.

To help the victims of more than a dozen tornadoes that hit the Midwest and the South this weekend, call the Red Cross at 1-800-HELP.

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Danielle Prieur

About Danielle Prieur

Reporter & Fill-in Host

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, ... Read Full Bio »