Local efforts to help those impacted by Hurricane Florence

Those outside of the military are helping those deal with Hurricane Florence’s impact.

Dozens of local volunteers have already left PA and more are on standby.

Two sisters from Scranton were the last volunteers to fly out of here early this morning early Friday morning.

More than a dozen people in all from this area are currently helping those in need, while others are headed here for relief from the dangerous storm.

As Hurricane Florence bears down on the Carolinas, Red Cross volunteers from our area are down South lending a helping hand.

"Out of our region, which entitles from Philadelphia up to here, right now we have 30 people down in the Carolinas. Out of those 30, 14 are from northeastern Pennsylvania,” Red Cross Executive Director Bill Goldsworthy said.

One of those volunteers is Wilkes-Barre resident Heather Bowman, who set up cots at an evacuation center in North Carolina this afternoon.

"Our volunteers up here are just so dedicated. We have a waiting list of some of our volunteers who want to go down and who are waiting to be deployed,” Goldsworthy said.

While some are going towards the storm, others are getting away.

Clay Hendren lives in Wilmington Beach and arrived to AVP from Charlotte for business earlier Thursday evening.

His wife and kids are back home, but he made sure they were prepared before he left.

"I've probably got two hundred bottles of water, gallons of water. And I talked to my wife about twenty minutes ago and she said it's still a breeze. A little bit of rain. We live like two miles from the coast,” Hendren said.

While dozens are already deployed and countless others are waiting to head down, many airports in North and South Carolina are closed until the storm moves out.

While most people donate money to different charities, Goldsworthy says there's a more life-saving way you can help: donate blood.

"So far, there's been about 150 blood drives canceled in the Carolinas. When you cancel blood drives, it's a big deal. So when you get 150 canceled because of a hurricane like this, and again that's so far, we need donations,” he said.

Goldsworthy says donating blood is often overlooked.

"It's the best and easiest gift you can give. I mean to me, it's a no brainer. I mean you roll up your sleeve, and take what you want. And you save a life. How easy could it be,” Goldsworthy added.

"People in North Carolina are pretty tough and stubborn as well. So, we're gonna stick it out either way,” Hendren said.

The next flight from Avoca to Charlotte is scheduled to depart at 6:19 Friday morning.

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