Mercy Ships, Red Cross stepping up to help - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Mercy Ships, Red Cross stepping up to help

By Layron Livingston - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email

LINDALE, TX (KLTV) - With the disaster in Haiti, some East Texans are already answering the call of duty, and more are stepping up to help.

Folks in East Texas have been going non-stop since word of the earthquake spread. The CEO of Mercy Ships says he was on the phone with people on the ground in Haiti within hours once the earthquake struck. As you can imagine, things have been busy for Sam Smith at the world headquarters near Lindale.

He and his staff are in the process of mobilizing dozens of Mercy Teams, who specialize in immediate disaster relief. Those doctors, nurses, construction workers will come from around the world to deal with both medical and non-medical issues. Smith says one team is actually trying to set up a hospital inside one of the school buildings that's virtually intact.

"We received a phone call earlier this morning from one of our partners in Haiti," said Smith. "He's been there for 27 years, and his response was this is 10 times worse than any hurricane that's ever hit. Powerful thing about humankind...when there's a significant need such as this, people want to get involved and react...our challenge at Mercy Ships is to try to the right people in the right place at the right time."

Mercy Ships says it could have up to 100 teams on the ground in Haiti in the coming days.

They say right now, you can help with donations.

We also contacted our local American Red Cross. They are on stand-by right now when it comes to in-kind donations, but financial donations are needed.

Click here for more information on how you can help.

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