FAIRFIELD, Conn., Aug. 28, 2017 : Save the Children's emergency response team is on the ground in San Antonio, Texas, working to meet children and families' immediate needs as Hurricane Harvey blasts inland from the Texas coastline.
"Thousands of children have been ripped from the lives they knew, and they have no idea what the future may hold," said Jeanne-Aimee De Marrais, Save the Children's senior director for U.S. emergencies. "We know that loss and displacement during disasters can affect children's mental health for years to come, and it's essential that we offer kids a chance to be kids again as soon as possible. We hope these families are able to return to their homes soon, but while families seek refuge during this emergency, Save the Children will be there to help them recover."

Shelters in San Antonio and Dallas have already received thousands of people, with many more expected to arrive in the coming days. One of the lead agencies responsible in assisting the Red Cross in helping displaced children in emergencies, Save the Children is assessing the number of kids and families fleeing the coastline who need assistance in area shelters, and positioning supplies to establish Child Friendly Spaces in those shelters.

Child Friendly Spaces are safe, designated areas where children can play, socialize and begin to recover after a disaster. They are run by trained staff members and give parents a supportive place to leave their children while attending to their family's immediate and longer-term needs.

Save the Children is also gathering essential supplies for families forced to evacuate, including hygiene kits, blankets, portable cribs and strollers.

(Posted on 28 August 2017, 1695758424 3O239O59O31)