Red Cross Trains Mille Lacs Band on How to Set Up a Shelter

Last fall the American Red Cross trained members of the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe in emergency sheltering. Below is the article about the training published in the Mille Lacs Band newspaper Ojibwe Inaajimowin and written by Jamie Edwards, public information
officer of the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Tribal Emergency Response Committee.

A baby on a Red Cross cot during the Minneapolis tornado response May 2011. Photo credit: Lynette Nyman/American Red Cross

Red Cross officials were on the Mille Lacs Reservation on November 17 [2011] to train the Band’s Tribal Emergency Response Committee (TERC) on how to set up a temporary shelter. This training session helped TERC members understand the Band’s role and each of their roles in setting up an emergency shelter in partnership with the Red Cross.

After the storm in District III this past summer, committee members requested training on how to set up temporary shelters at each District’s Community Center. If any future disasters should leave Band members temporarily homeless or without basic necessities, a shelter would be the most efficient way to respond.

“Setting up a temporary shelter takes a lot of teamwork since an emergency shelter can be needed any time during the year and at all hours of the day,” said Monte Fronk, Mille Lacs Band emergency management coordinator. “TERC requested this additional training because we want to be prepared in the event that we need to set up a temporary shelter.”

In general, the process would involve the Band preparing a shelter site (such as one of the community centers) for the Red Cross to bring cots, blankets and meals. Since government entities do not normally keep these supplies in their inventories, the Duluth Red Cross [American Red Cross Northern Minnesota Region] would provide these resources under the direction of TERC. The Band would also be responsible for operating the shelter as well as services such as transportation, medical care, and mental health services.

Mii gwech to the Red Cross’s Duluth office for providing the training session…

Click here to learn more about the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe.

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