Jamaica Red Cross prepares on all levels for Hurricane Dennis

Jamaica Red Cross (JRC) has activated its disaster management mechanisms in preparation for the passage of Hurricane Dennis. These include call-out of volunteers, activation of Shelter Managers, Community Disaster Response and National Intervention Teams.
Volunteers in the Jamaica Red Cross Disaster Mental Health Unit (DMHU) are on standby to provide psychological support to persons in shelters as well as emergency response personnel. DMH volunteers are professionals in the field of psychosocial support and as Red Cross volunteers they have dedicated their time and skills to the spirit of volunteerism and in service to humanity.

The Disaster Mental Health Unit was established in 1997 and is chaired by Dr. Angela Gordon Stair, Clinical Psychologist. According to Dr. Gordon Stair "it is important to provide psychological and emotional support in addition to responding to persons' physical needs." The unit has provided special training to several organizations including the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management during the agency's shelter management workshops. In addition to training other JRC volunteers in the provision of basic psychosocial support skills in disaster response, the Unit has made interventions in Grenada, Cayman and Guyana during the 2004 Hurricane season.

Jamaica Red Cross is a member of the International Federation of Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies which is the largest humanitarian organization in the world.

The International Federation is standing by to support the Jamaica Red Cross relief operation.

For further information contact Miss Yvonne Clarke, Director General; Mrs. Lois Hue, Deputy Director General or Miss Ruth Chisholm, Director of Emergency Services & Communication at the numbers below or via email: rchisholm@jamaicaredcross.org, loishue@jamaicaredcross.org.