This week is National Volunteer Week–a time to celebrate and thank our wonderful volunteers. Over 90% of what the American Red Cross does is done by our volunteers, and they do a little bit of everything. Here are just a few of the ways our volunteers help out:
1–Disaster volunteers go out in the middle of the night when someone’s house is burning, and provide comfort and hope along with the physical necessities like shelter, food and clothing.
2–Blood volunteers help donors get registered at a blood drive and make sure that every donor gets refreshments after their donation.
3–Volunteer instructors teach life-saving CPR, AED, and First Aid classes, swim lessons, babysitting classes, and even pet first aid classes.
4–Office volunteers help keep our offices organized, clean and efficient, and help ensure that Red Cross mailings make it into the hands of our financial donors and friends.
5–Shelter and feeding volunteers are in action almost immediately when disaster strikes, providing safe spaces and hot meals to people displaced from their homes.
6–Volunteer drivers take our Emergency Response Vehicles (ERVs) out into neighborhoods devastated by disaster and deliver water, meals, and even clean-up supplies to people trying to recover and rebuild.
7–Logistics volunteers help coordinate our disaster responses, so everything gets where it needs to be, when it needs to be there.
8–External relations volunteers help manage Red Cross interactions with government agencies, other charity organizations, and the media so that everyone gets coordinated, up-to-date information about the best ways to help in a disaster.
9–Casework volunteers work with people one-on-one after a disaster strikes, helping them find the services and support they need.
10–Technology volunteers keep all of the computers, phones and other devices talking to each other to ensure efficient communications.
11–Fundraising and event volunteers help out with special events, direct mailings, and other communications with our donors to help raise the funds the Red Cross needs to function.
12–Disaster assessment volunteers go out into communities to check and report back on the extent of the damage a disaster does, so we know where our services are needed the most.
Red Cross volunteers are some of the most amazing people in the world. They–YOU–bring so much talent, heart and enthusiasm to what we do every day. During National Volunteer Week–and always–we are forever grateful.