Trauma of Yorkshire floods will have 'profound effect' on victim's mental health, says charity CEO

The trauma of the devastating floods which hit Yorkshire over the last week will have a profound effect on victim's mental health and they must be given lasting support, the Chief Executive of The Red Cross has said.

Mike Adamson, CEO of The British Red Cross, spoke of the lasting trauma flooding victims will suffer as he visited the village of Fishlake in Doncaster, which has been devastated by the floods.

Mr Adamson said: "The situation in Fishlake has been really terrible and people's lives have been devastated by what has happened.

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"For each of them, their journey to recovery is going to be different.

The village of Fishlake in Doncaster, which has been devastated by the floods.The village of Fishlake in Doncaster, which has been devastated by the floods.
The village of Fishlake in Doncaster, which has been devastated by the floods.

"This is not as bad as the Cumbria floods in 2009 and 2015 in terms of the number of people who have been affected, but it is for those who have been affected just as devastating

"It is absolutely exhausting for people that have been affected. the stress they have had at leaving their home and worry about what will happen in the long run. Then of course there is a huge impact on their mental health and the impact the worry has on them that this could happen again - it has a lasting effect.

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More than 80 British Red Cross volunteers and staff have been providing practical and emotional help to flood-affected communities since the floods hit over a week ago, from helping with emergency medicines to psychological support to providing cleaning materials.

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Representatives have also been checking on vulnerable residents and manning rest centres for those who have been evacuated from their homes.

The British Red Cross has also given £50,000 from its Disaster Fund to help people who have been affected by the flooding. The money will be used to meet the urgent needs of people in the worst affected areas.

Mr Adamson has praised the community spirit and the way people have come together to help one another in times of need.

"In times of distress people really do come together and it brings out the best in us.," he said.

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"We believe in the power of kindness and trying to help people who are in need. We see people in the community who respond first and help themselves and others. Our job is to get out there and see where they need that extra help.

"We are really proud to play a part in people's time of need and incredibly fortunate to have skilled volunteers and staff willing to help."

The wet weather is expected to ease across the country over the weekend, despite the potential for showers.

Mr Adamson said: "The good news is the picture appears to be improving because the rain on Thursday has not had the impact we feared and the pumping the Environment Agency is doing is making a real difference. There is now only 16 houses that have not had their electricity supply reconnected."