Strong Aftershock hits near Port-au-Prince

Getting ready this morning for class I decided to turn the radio on for some music to keep me awake in the shower. As I turn on the radio and get into the shower I hear the DJ’s voice, sounding odd and not like usual. He says that the news is so tough to report this morning he can barely get it out. He goes on to say how just 8 days after the devastating Haiti earthquake an aftershock has struck just 35 miles outside of where the 7.0 magnitude quake hit. This one isn’t much smaller at a magnitude of 6.1. I could barely handle the news. My mind before this was buzzing with the readings I still had to do before class, getting to the bus on time and all the other responsibilities of my day. After hearing this tragic news none of that seems quite as important. Tens of thousands more have died, hundreds of thousands are misplaced and the damage is unimaginable. Survivors described going through the quake like “standing on a plank on top of a ball”.

Last night I was talking with some fellow members of the National Youth Council about why the Haiti Earthquakes have sparked such a huge reaction from the American people, sending in donations, twittering, blogging etc. The reaction has been unlike anything the American Red Cross has ever seen before. The answer is simple; it’s because tragedies like this, no matter what borders they happen within, cannot be overlooked by humanity. This is an issue of humanity – just one of the principles the Red Cross was founded upon. Together as American Red Cross youth we can help to spread this idea of humanity and compassion for all. We know and have experienced what it means to be an American Red Cross volunteer or to donate to a cause bigger than yourself. There is no feeling like it in the world. Take this tragedy that has struck the lives of millions and turn it into an opportunity for those that want to help to do something bigger and more beautiful than they could have ever imagined.

Encourage friends, families and your community to donate to the International Response Fund today. Furthermore encourage them to not stop there and to learn more about the opportunities to volunteer for the American Red Cross within their own communities.

Keep checking redcrosschat.org and here on redcrossyouth.org for more information and constant updates.

Bianca, Florida

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