Red Cross Awareness Month

United Way of the Chattahoochee ValleyMarch 8, 2013 

United Way of the Chattahoochee Valley works to support many worthy causes, one of which is the American Red Cross. In the wake of tornado season for the Chattahoochee Valley, it's very appropriate that we celebrate March as American Red Cross Awareness Month. Are you and your family prepared for disaster? A house fire can happen at any time - unfortunately we are all susceptible to terrible natural disasters. March is a great time to become part of the Red Cross by doing such things as developing a preparedness plan for your household, becoming a volunteer, giving blood or taking a Red Cross class.

Did you know that in a typical year, our local chapter responds to a local disaster every other day? The Red Cross of West Central Georgia has already provided 490 people with disaster assistance in the past six months, and expects to respond to 120 house fires this year. It provides 24-hour support to members of the military, veterans and their families. In a typical month Red Cross assists 230 military families with emergency communications. Last year American Red Cross West Central Georgia Chapter hosted 479 blood drives and collected 9,845 units of blood. Those individuals that give their blood and/or platelets receive no compensation from the Red Cross to do so, it is simply a volunteer bases. In the past six months over 29,000 individuals in our area have been through a disaster preparedness class taught by our local Red Cross Chapter.

When you support United Way, you are helping the Red Cross provide these critical services to our area. Red Cross volunteers are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week - turning your caring and concern into action. Our local Red Cross is here, day-in, day-out, for families who have lost everything they own to fire - the single most common disaster in the nation.

Don't be caught off guard in the wake of emergency. You can download the Red Cross Preparedness App on your phone or I-Pad. The app contains simple steps and checklist you can use to create an emergency plan and share it with household members plus a variety of other safety features. You can also visit the Red Cross website at http://www.redcross.org/ga/columbus or United Way's website at www.unitedwayofthecv.org.

United Way of the Chattahoochee Valley works to support 50 programs within 26 agencies in Muscogee, Harris, Chattahoochee, Marion, Taylor, Talbot and Stewart counties in Georgia, and Russell County in Alabama.

Scott Ferguson, President and CEO of United Way of the Chattahoochee Valley

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