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10 Facts You Didn’t Know About The American Red Cross

This is a sponsored post on behalf of the American Red Cross. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

I’ve loosely known about the American Red Cross for as long as I could remember. I know that they’re always talked about heavily during huge disasters. They’re also heavily scrutinized through these disasters too. What I found out was that I didn’t really know much about the American Red Cross and what I learned was eye-opening.

When asked what I knew I about the American Red Cross, I embarrassingly drew a blank. And then I took a tour, fell in love and had to share with you!

10 Facts About The American Red Cross

  1. It was founded by a woman named Clarissa (Clara) Harlowe Barton who was a hospital nurse in the American Civil War. She founded the American Red Cross when she was 59.
  2. While headquartered in Washington D.C., the American Red Cross is NOT a government entity or related to the government at all.
  3. While there are paid positions within the organization, it is primarily run with the efforts of volunteers.
  4. Ninety-percent of the humanitarian work is carried out by volunteers.
  5. The Red Cross is involved with huge disasters, yes, but the main they are mainly involved with house fires on a local level.
  6. America Red Cross offers training year-round for everything ranging from babysitter training to first aid.
  7. The largest supplier of blood in the nation is the Red Cross and they have been leaders in blood collection since 1940.
  8. You can schedule a tour of the Red Cross and see the bits of history that is still alive and well in their building.
  9. The CEO Gail McGovern is a strong believer in transparency and she was a complete open book with the questions we asked. This doesn’t begin and end with her either–everyone we met was an open book.
  10. Through their Home Fire Campaign, they’ve been able to impact 15,900 communities, install 1.8 million alarms, and have 627 confirmed saved lives and counting.

There are a lot of statistics that the team who works for the Red Cross shared but honestly, that’s not what stuck with me. The people working and volunteering there did. I’ve never walked into a place where everyone seemed to really love the place that they worked. They all shared how the Red Cross impacted their lives. Many of us were left in tears as one volunteer Brian recounted how he wouldn’t be alive if it weren’t for the blood donations.

After I left from my behind the scenes tour, I was seriously wondering, “So what now? How do I get involved?”

Get Involved With The Red Cross

Here are some things both you and I can do:

  • Donate blood.
  • Host a blood drive
  • Learn how to create an emergency kit and then volunteer to train others
  • Volunteer remotely with social media
  • Share more information about the Red Cross so others can get involved.
  • Learn to install smoke alarms and then install them as needed.

Whatever it is that you do, get involved because you’re needed!

Where do you think you could be most effective as a volunteer?

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