CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- September isn't even half over and it's already been a busy month at the Cedar Rapids chapter of American Red Cross.
"Definitely busy but energetic a lot of people have been moving out of the doors to go help,” Disaster Program Manager Mary Flury said.
33 Iowans are on their way to the coastal states to set up community shelters. But back in the Midwest, Flury wants people to know there are other ways to help.
"Especially when there are disasters going on, the need for blood increases," she said.
There is always a need for blood donations. In July, the Red Cross declared a blood emergency nationwide.
But that need becomes even more during natural disasters. Experts say they always try to get people out of the storm's path, but tragedy still happens. And blood donations will truly save lives.
"That way everyone is taken care of especially if hospitals and things are damaged,” Flury said.
Volunteers work to prevent any injuries and are helping people find a safe place to stay.
So far, the Red Cross says 1,500 people are staying at its community shelters. That number will continue to grow as the storm approaches. .