Red Cross

Thursday, June 13, 2013

"When you practice gratefulness, there is a sense of respect toward others." - Dalai Lama
Tornadoes, diseases, super storms,  wildfires, name it, the Red Cross covers it. Founded in 1881 by Clara Barton, the Red Cross has been "a consistent lifeline for people when they need it the most." 

"The American Red Cross exists to provide compassionate care to those in need. Our network of generous donors, volunteers and employees share a mission of preventing and relieving suffering, here at home and around the world, through five key service areas: disaster relief, supporting America's military families, lifesaving blood, health and safety services, and international services." 

 Disaster relief
Every year the Red Cross responds to about 70,000 disasters in the United States, ranging anywhere from house fires to hurricanes, by providing shelter, food, health and mental health services to help get communities back on their feet. To read more continue here.

Supporting America's military families
The Red Cross helps members of the military, veterans and their families "prepare for, cope with, and respond to the challenges of military service." The organization helps an average of 150,000 military families and veterans each year. To read more continue here.

Lifesaving blood
The amount of blood donations the American Red Cross receives makes it the largest single supplier of blood and blood products in the U.S. With nearly 4 million people donating each year, the American Red Cross helps provide more than 40% of America's blood supply! To read more continue here.

Health and safety services
The Red Cross is the nation's #1 provider of health and safety courses like CPR, First Aid and Lifeguard training. Each year, over 9 million people participate in their training programs, including first responders, educators and babysitters. To read more continue here.

International services
The American Red Cross works to "help respond to disasters, build safer communities, and educate future humanitarians." The Red Cross is a part of the world's largest humanitarian network with 13 million volunteers in 187 countries, and by reaching more than 100 million people across the world. To read more continue here.

So what can you do to help? There are loads of ways you can make a difference in the world, you can: make a donation, have a fundraiser, volunteer, give blood, spread the word, or even help prepare for emergencies. To read more about ways to help, visit the American Red Cross website here.

Look at all of the damage just natural disasters have caused, for example Hurricane Katrina (2005) killed over 1800 people and caused $81 billion in damages. Some of the more recent tragedies the world has suffered are the Haiti (2010) and Japan (2011) earthquakes, Hurricane Sandy (2012), the Iran earthquake (2012), and the Oklahoma tornado (2013). Organizations like the American Red Cross work to get as much help to these sites as fast as they can.

When tragedies like Hurricane Katrina strike, it makes me feel a little better that we have organizations like these whose sole purpose is to help others. I'm definitely thankful for these services and the services of our armed forces, police departments, fire departments, hospitals and other public facilities! Thank you for all that you do for us, it doesn't go unnoticed! So do your part in the world and be thankful for what you have.

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