With the large Samoan population here in Utah, I hope that some of them will step up and volunteer to help. Or that any others with the ability and time will offer it up.


Local chapters of the American Red Cross in Utah are working at this hour to deploy disaster trained Red Cross volunteers to American Samoa. There are several crucial volunteer positions needed to help with sheltering and feeding of the people affected by the tsunami there. Twelve Red Cross disaster volunteers from Utah are confirmed to go at this hour, with more pending. All local chapters are reporting many calls coming in from Utahns who are concerned about loved ones affected by the earthquake and tsunami and who want to help by making donations to the disaster relief efforts.

SAFE AND WELL: Getting information out of the island is very slow at this time. The Red Cross urges those who have been able to contact loved ones on American Samoa to register them with Safe and Well, the best way to share information about their status. You can register on the Red Cross Safe and Well Website at www.redcross.org. If you do not have internet access, call 1-800-REDCROSS to register your loved ones. The information you post will let other loved ones know about the well-being of those on the island. Please note - Safe and Well works only for American Samoa. For inquiries regarding Samoa call the Department of State at 1-888-407-4747.

DONATIONS: The American Red Cross is responding to the situation in American Samoa, thanks to our Disaster Relief Fund. Anyone wishing to support this operation should make a gift to the Disaster Relief Fund. On those rare occasions when donations exceed Red Cross expenses for a specific disaster, contributions are used to prepare for and serve victims of other disasters. Your gift enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance to victims of all disaster. Call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish). Contributions to the Disaster Relief Fund may be sent to your local American Red Cross chapter, or to American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, D.C., 20013. Internet users can make a secure online donation by visiting www.redcross.org or www.utahredcross.org.