Panama City's new Red Cross location opens its doors to the public

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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Since the 1950's, The American Red Cross of Northwest Florida has served our area from its location off of 15th Street in Panama City.

Red Cross is opening it's doors at it's new location in Downtown Panama City. (WJHG/WECP)

"The whole building is filled with pieces that we salvaged from our old building which was destroyed by Michael," said Kelly Jo Bailey, the Disaster Program Manager for The American Red Cross North Florida.

Now the organization is located at 475 Harrison Avenue in Downtown Panama City, where they're working to continue relief and recovery efforts from Hurricane Michael, and any other disasters the future might hold.

"It's an everyday ongoing thing," said Bob Pearce, the Regional Disaster Officer for The American Red Cross North Florida.

An ongoing thing, that could use your help.

"I think it was almost 275 active Red Cross disaster volunteers in the Panama City area and it went down to below 50 after Hurricane Michael," said Pearce.

And there's only about 50 volunteers active now.

While Red Cross officials tell us they are still helping with shelters in times of need, they're also helping with other issues.

"In a big disaster event not only do we work in shelters but we do bulk distribution of items that people need," said Pearce.

Red Cross staff say there's two things they do everyday to keep the community out of harms way.

"We make homes safer through the home fire campaign, where we do safety plans in homes for families and install smoke alarms, and then we respond and help families whose houses have been destroyed in single family house fires," said Pearce.

This helps them fulfill their main goal.

"We put clients first, we take care of each other, and we are relentlessly kind. And that gets us through pretty much every tough rough situation that we could encounter," said Bailey.

If you are interested in volunteering, you can click here to learn more.

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