It was a busy week for the local American Red Cross. Volunteers responded to 14 fires in the past seven days. That boils down to 21 families made up of 69 people.
One of those fires happened early Saturday morning on State Street in Middletown. All six members of the Radabaugh family were injured and forced out their home.
“There's nothing left for them to come back to,” said neighbor Diane Reigle.
That is where the Red Cross comes in. After the flames are out, volunteers give the affected families food, shelter, clothes, and whatever else they might need.
But this week, the Middletown fire was just one of more than a dozen in the area.
Steven Coots is a Red Cross volunteer. He said such busy weeks could put a strain on resources, which is why donations are so important for the non-profit.
“It's very important. Everything that we do goes back into the community. If it wasn't for our people who donate the money to the Red Cross and the volunteers who come in, this organization wouldn't be here,” Coots said.
Such a busy week can also spread volunteers thin, too. Coots responded to three of those fires.
“Physically, it can get tiring,” said Coots. “All of our volunteers are in different teams so each team is on once a week to give everyone else a breather.”
But volunteers say it is worth it.
“It's a sense of passion that when you go home, you go back and relax with your family and know you did something well to help someone else in the community,” said Coots.
Since the Red Cross helps so many people, the organization is always in need of donations. To find out how you can help, check out http://www.redcross.org/pa/harrisburg.
To help support the Radabaugh family, visit: https://www.giveforward.com/fundraiser/k7c3/radabaugh-fire-relief-fund.
Connect and help support the family on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/254002261414118/.