Guam - As the island remains in Code Yellow, reps from the American Red Cross national headquarters arrived to Guam earlier this week and addressed the Mayors Council of Guam today looking to build up capacity, especially shelters. Volunteer for the vice president of disaster operations at national headquarters Glenn Lockwood says schools don't need to be the only shelters available for those in need - but those at a village level can open their homes and community centers with the right training.

"When a shelter is managed by local people there's a greater level of ownership and pride in the condition and support the shelter residents receive," he explained. "When it's done by people from that community that as the mayor said people want to step forward and want to help this is the way they want to help and this is the way we can help - by providing training that they can see ways of helping themselves and helping their community."

Aside from shelter fundamentals courses on how to open a shelter and how to take care of people, Red Cross offers a shelter managers course, disaster assessment trainings, and trainings for healthcare professionals on how to serve shelter residents.

For more information, call Guam disaster director Dave Peredo at 472-6217 or 688-0282.