Red Cross training in Medford for Harvey and Chetco Bar Fire

Medford, Ore.- Today The Red Cross held one of three statewide training’s in Medford. The response was more than double what organizers expected, as the room filled with volunteers ready to take action and serve those impacted by the Chetco Bar Fire and Hurricane Harvey.

Red Cross officials were expecting 15 people. They ended up with nearly 40.

During the six hour training those 40 people were trained on how to prepare for working in any natural disaster.

Teaching the volunteers how to be prepared and stay consistent in their work with The Red Cross is seven year volunteer Brian Fenderson and his wife Ana.

The Fendersons made the four hour drive down to Medford from their home in Salem to train new Red Cross volunteers. For Brian Fenderson the drive is well worth it because his favorite thing about his work with The Red Cross is the people.

Today they covered the basics of going to a disaster, how to lead the force helping those in need, and the conditions volunteers should be prepared to live in.

Brian Henderson says that he tells the new volunteers, “Conditions are very harsh. Don’t plan on staying in a hotel room. Plan on staying in a staff shelter.”

The biggest thing they stress to all volunteers is their disaster relief motto. To be flexible.

Together, Fenderson and his wife have taught more than 100 classes in their seven years volunteering with The Red Cross.

But teaching classes isn’t the only thing Brian Fenderson does for The Red Cross. He’s a¬†government liaison, a local disaster responder, and an Emergency Response Vehicle driver.

Like all of the passionate Red Cross volunteers, Brian is ready to get his hands dirty and help those in need once he’s done training new volunteers next week.

Today Brian Fenderson says the biggest shelter that The Red Cross has going is housing more than 9,000 people.

It’s Fenderson’s goal to prepare volunteers to help at larger scale locations and at smaller scale locations like the Chetco Bar Fire shleter at Riley Elementary.

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