Many caring and concerned individuals have inquired about the Drum Corps International "fraternity" in regard to providing service in relief aid to the recent Hurricane Katrina victims. It has been suggested that chuck wagon vehicles, in the very least, could be deployed for use in the area. DCI has offered their services to both the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the American Red Cross beginning with the 2004 hurricanes in Florida. Although the offer was much appreciated, the organizations declined the offer of help as states and regions have well thought-out systems already in place to feed and victims. In response to in-kind giving, the Red Cross states in an article on their Web site, "Unsolicited, spontaneous donations of goods and services from individuals and community groups, although well-intentioned, have hidden costs and pose a number of complications for initial relief efforts." The Red Cross would prefer to work within its own established relationships and find it most helpful for those wishing to help, to donate monetarily so that the volume of items necessary in relieving need can be purchased and distributed quickly, fairly and efficiently. Drum corps with equipment that can be deployed for use in emergencies should work within their own community systems so that they are "on the list" of resources should they be needed in their area. Many drum corps do currently work with their local agencies and are utilized when the need arises. For more information on how to best support the relief effort, please go HERE.
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