NY Area Volunteers Lend a Hand in the Gulf

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In preparation for Tropical Storm Isaac, the Red Cross of Greater New York is sending 30 volunteers down to the Gulf states.

As of Monday evening, forecasters said they expected the storm to make landfall by Wednesday, possibly as a hurricane.

Susan Squillace, a retired school psychologist from Farmingdale, Long Island, is driving down to Louisiana with a fellow volunteer in an Emergency Response Vehicle, or ERV. She described it as a 22-hour trip in a big ambulance. She's volunteered in situations like this before, including last year's Tropical Storm Irene.

She said once volunteers check in on the ground, they'll be sent to where they're needed the most.

"I may work from the ERV itself, I may be giving out food and water to people in the community, or I may have to do something different, like work in the shelter or other things like that," she explained.

Squillace will be leaving for a two-week deployment to Port Allen, Louisiana, about an hour and a half northwest of New Orleans, on Tuesday morning. She said she's eager to help where she's needed.

"For two weeks I can be put out a little bit," she said. "I can sleep on a cot, I can do what needs to be done because these people have it much worse."

With the Associated Press