San Manuel Band of Mission Indians Donates $200,000 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief

SAN BERNARDINO, CALIFORNIA — The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has donated $200,000 toward American Red Cross Disaster Relief to be used to assist those impacted by the devastating tornadoes and severe weather that hit five states in the Midwest in mid-November and left six dead.

San Manuel Tribal Offices, near San Bernardino, California

San Manuel Tribal Offices, near San Bernardino, California

“Disasters have long lasting impacts on those affected and San Manuel Band of Mission Indians is pleased to be in partnership with the American Red Cross to support the on-going response to these events,” said San Manuel Tribal Chairperson Carla Rodriguez. “By helping affected communities to recover we are fulfilling our traditional teachings and values to sustain life and wholeness in the world.”

This donation will help the Red Cross immediately respond to the approximately 70,000 natural and man-made disasters that happen throughout the U.S. on a yearly basis. When disaster threaten or strikes, the Red Cross focuses on meeting people’s immediate emergency needs by providing shelter, food, and health and emotional health services to address basic human needs and assist individuals and families in resuming their normal daily activities independently. Red Cross disaster relief efforts also includes feeding emergency workers like fire fighters and police, handles inquiries from concerned family members outside the disaster area, provides blood and blood products to disaster victims, and helps them access other available resources.

Tornadoes hit the Midwest and left six dead

Tornadoes hit the Midwest and left six dead

“We’re extremely grateful to San Manuel for their generous support of Red Cross Disaster Relief,” said Maxine Margaritis, regional CEO American Red Cross, serving Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties. “Donations such as this will go a long way in helping the Red Cross meet the emergency needs of those devastated by the many disasters we respond to on a regular basis.”

The Red Cross and San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has a long standing partnership that began following the Old Fire in 2003, to which San Manuel dedicated relief effort resources following wildfires that burned more than 90,000 acres. In the years since, the tribe has supported multiple Red Cross international and domestic disaster relief efforts and helped fund programs that provide preparedness training to members of the community, including seniors and youth.

The Tribe has a long history of assisting others in time of catastrophic disasters. Last year the San Manuel Band assisted Montana tribes after their tribal lands were hit by floods,  according to Jacob Coin, the director of the San Manuel’s Office of Public Affairs.

“We operate under the fundamental belief we a part of people all over the Earth. Since we began our program, we have assisted several Native American tribes, but we always work closely with the Red Cross to assist others. They have the structure in place that ensures that those in need will receive the proper assistance for food, shelter and clothing,” Coin commented.

The San Manuel Band of Serrano Mission Indians is a federally recognized American Indian tribe located near the city of Highland, California. The Serrano Indians are the indigenous people of the San Bernardino highlands, passes, valleys and mountains who share a common language and culture. The San Manuel reservation was established in 1891 and recognized as a sovereign nation with the right of self-government.

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