Helping Kids be Kids in the Wake of Hurricane Harvey

Phyllis games 1

Soon after Harvey made landfall, long time American Red Cross volunteer Phyllis Stafford touched down in Austin, Texas to help—carrying more luggage than most. Back home in Rhode Island, Phyllis has a good friend who works at Hasbro.  When her friend heard she was headed to help the families affected by Hurricane Harvey, she quickly spoke to her co-workers about helping. Hasbro jumped at the opportunity and packed Phyllis’ suitcases full of 2,000 games and toys, to share with families impacted by Harvey.

Hasro games 2Shortly after, while hard at work providing shelter, hot meals and comfort to hundreds of evacuees staying at Red Cross shelters in Austin, Phyllis received another call. In hopes of putting more smiles on the faces of our youngest guests, Hasbro was sending an additional 15,000 games and toys to Texas!

In a time of much heartbreak, old favorites like Monopoly, Candy Land and Connect 4, are comforting and bringing laughter to brothers and sisters playing parents, grandparents and even new friends at Red Cross shelters.

Mini horseRed Cross volunteers, like Phyllis, work around the clock to make shelters as comfortable as possible, especially for children who have lost their homes, their toys and all their belongings. We work alongside partners like Children’s Disaster Services, who specialize in child care and supportive play in traumatic times of disaster. In Austin, Mini ponies and therapy dogs, princesses and balloon artists also spent time brightening the days of children and adults at our shelters.

Across Texas and Louisiana, the Red Cross has been providing shelter to more 30,000 people each night in the wake of Harvey. To support the Red Cross in Harvey relief efforts: visit, call 1-800-RED-CROSS or text ‘HARVEY’ to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

Helping Kids be Kids in the Wake of Hurricane Harvey