Now - Hurricane Harvey is threatening our neighbors in Texas and southwestern Acadiana and the Red Cross is offering training for those who want to help with disaster aid.

We're known for rushing to help friends and strangers alike in Acadiana, and proper training minimizes risk to volunteers and those in need of assistance. Volunteers constitute about 90 percent of the American Red Cross workforce and enable the Red Cross to respond to the nearly 64,000 disasters every year.

The classes offered this weekend focus on shelter operations, introducing the guidelines and procedures for establishing, operating and closing a shelter during a disaster.

Classes are available at Red Cross offices in:

Lafayette, 215 E. Pinhook
• Saturday, Aug. 26, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Lake Charles, 3512 Kirkman St.
• Friday, Aug. 25, 5:30-9 p.m.
• Saturday, Aug. 26, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Contact the Red Cross Louisiana volunteer team with questions about becoming a volunteer at (800) 229-8191 ext. 3130.