Red Cross houses over 500 evacuees of the Kilauea eruption


HONOLULU, HI- May 14, 2018: Two American Red Cross shelters remain open for residents evacuated from their homes due to the Kilauea lava threat at the following locations:

Debra Smith, a Puna resident, found comfort at and emotional care at the Red Cross Pahoa Shelter. Photo courtesy of Red Cross.

As of midnight, there were about 484 residents at the Pahoa shelter and 25 residents at the Keaau shelter. 82 Red Cross workers have been assisting evacuees with their immediate emergency needs.

Since May 3, the Red Cross, along with Hawaii County partners, have distributed hundreds of blankets, sheets, pillows, futons, towels, masks, toiletry kits, and other items; as well as over 6,400 snacks. The Red Cross is also working with the Salvation Army to provide meals. Additionally, trained Red Cross nurses and mental health volunteers are staffing the shelters and have provided health and mental health services to over 700 individuals.

Red Cross Mother’s Day lunch at the Pahoa Shelter. Photo courtesy of the Red Cross.

Yesterday, the American Red Cross of Hawaii, together with community partners Ahiu Hawaii, Hawaii Land Stewards, Kalalau Ranch, doTERRA, and Paradise Automotive, hosted an event for Mothers staying at the Pahoa and Keeau shelters. The event included lunch, desserts, entertainment, chair massage, Mother’s Day card making, lei, and gift bags. An estimated 250 people attended, including about 150 Mothers from the Pahoa shelter. About 40 residents at the Keeau shelter were also treated to massage, treats, flowers, and gifts.

“During this time of uncertainty and hardship in having to evacuate their homes and stay in a shelter, we wanted our Mothers to know that they are loved and appreciated,” said Coralie Matayoshi, Hawaii Red Cross CEO.

Mahalo to Ahiu Hawaii, Hawaii Land Stewards, Kalalau Ranch, doTERRA, Healing Hands Foundation, and Paradise Automotive for sponsoring the lunch, massage, gift bags, and entertainment. Zippy’s Napoleon Bakery, KTA Superstores, Big Island Candies, and Island Naturals are donating desserts, and Target has leis for these special Moms.