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Local Red Cross volunteer on the ground in Texas helping hurricane victims

Amanda Pasko was deployed Monday
Posted at 6:15 PM, Aug 31, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-31 18:15:42-04

Amanda Pasko was nervous, but determined when ABC2 News spoke with her Monday. The Anne Arundel County woman was hours away from boarding a plane bound for flood-ravaged Texas.

“My hope is to be able to give as much help to those in need whatever their needs are at the time."

It’s Amanda’s first deployment to aid in a natural disaster, and she's been on the ground in Austin, Texas for the last three days working 12-hour shifts.

"A lot of people are in shock, just still trying to process what's happened and trying to collect their thoughts as to what the next steps are to move forward with their life," she said.

ABC2 News caught up with Amanda at a shelter set up inside an activity center.  She says about 100 evacuees from the Houston area are there getting much needed help.

"A lot of people need counseling support there are people here with serious medical conditions that need to be immediately addressed," said Amanda.

Children are being placed in schools so their education isn't interrupted, there's even a pet area with about a dozen dogs, cats and birds being cared for.

Amanda says locals and organizations are stepping up to make a difference in the lives of people who might not have homes to return to.

"Right now in Austin we have at least 15 different shelters set up at activity centers, and high schools,” she said.  “So ultimately the goal is to consolidate all of these smaller shelters into one larger mass shelter so that all of our resources can be pooled into one location."

To sustain this kind of support, the Red Cross needs help from you.  Volunteers, blood donations, and financial support can make a direct impact on thousands of people.

"Out of all the things I’ve done I would have to say the last three-days has been the most rewarding experience for me,” said Amanda.  “To be able to be a part of something so big and so meaningful."

Amanda will be in Texas for about two weeks.