For more information on how to beat the heat, visit redcross.org!
For more information on how to beat the heat, visit redcross.org!
Young Professionals Help Protect People in Parma from Home Fires
A new partnership proved to be fruitful for residents in a neighborhood of Parma on Saturday, May 6. Members of the Cleveland Professional 20/30 Club joined forces with the Red Cross and members of the Parma Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) to install more than two-dozen smoke alarms in homes where needed. The volunteers also performed home fire safety inspections and offered valuable fire prevention and safety education.
The Cleveland Professional 20/30 Club is the longest-running young professional association in Northeast Ohio. The mission and vision is to enrich the lives of young professionals, to foster the future leaders of Cleveland. The group is independent, open and inclusive, and membership represents a wide range of cultures, backgrounds and professions, and touching the lives of more than 1,000 young professionals through its programs on an annual basis.
“Our volunteers from The Cleveland Professional 20/30 Club enjoyed working together with the American Red Cross of Greater Cleveland and Parma Cert to help install free smoke alarms in people’s homes,” said Melanie Raese, Philanthropy Director of the Cleveland Professional 20/30 Club. “It was a fun, team building experience and we learned about fire safety. We are grateful to serve our communities and to work alongside those dedicated to building safer neighborhoods.”
Since 2014, Red Cross volunteers, along with fire departments and other partners, have visited homes installing free smoke alarms, replacing batteries in existing alarms and providing fire prevention and safety education to prevent needless tragedies. More than 26,000 smoke alarms have been installed in homes in Northeast Ohio in the past two years. This fall, the Red Cross will celebrate the program with Sound the Alarm, a series of home fire safety and smoke alarm installation events nationwide. Volunteers will install 100,000 free smoke alarms in high risk neighborhoods in Akron, Cleveland, and more than 100 other cities across the country, culminating in the installation of the one millionth smoke alarm!
If you would like to help us Sound the Alarm about fire safety and help save lives, visit us at redcross.org/neo and click on the Volunteer tab. More information about Sound the Alarm is located here.
See more photos, taken by Red Cross volunteer George Scherma, on Flickr.
Red Cross, Dominion Team Up to Distribute Emergency Preparedness Kits
It was no April Fool’s joke; we were really giving away Emergency Kits, sponsored by Dominion East Ohio, to help prepare people for potential disasters on Saturday, April 1st, at eight locations throughout Northeast Ohio.
About 4,000 kits were distributed, free of charge, to people who took the time to determine how much they knew about being prepared for emergencies, as spring storm season approaches.
John Gareis, Regional Manager, Preparedness and Community Planning, said, “With everyone’s efforts, we were able to touch the lives of nearly 4,000 families; 8,330 individuals – including 3,048 children; an increase of 1,382 lives touched over 2016’s very successful event.”
Residents received free Emergency Kits and timely preparedness information at Starwood Great Northern Mall and Starwood South Park Mall in Cuyahoga County, Starwood Belden Village Mall in Canton, New Towne Mall in New Philadelphia, Eastwood Mall in Niles, and at Walmart stores in Ashtabula, Wooster and Stow.
See our photo gallery from Red Cross/Dominion Preparedness Day here.
Thunderstorms, Tornadoes, Flooding All Threats
Spring can be a time for devastating weather. It is the peak time of year for tornadoes, flooding, thunderstorms and other severe weather.
The American Red Cross wants everyone to know what steps they can take to stay safe if dangerous weather is predicted for their community.
Tornado devastation in Albany, Georgia, January 2017. Photo credit: Daniel Cima for the American Red Cross
Spring can be the peak season for tornado activity. Tornadoes occur mostly on warm spring days between 3:00 and 9:00 p.m. However, tornadoes can occur anywhere, at any time of the year, at any time of the day. The Red Cross has safety steps people should take now to be ready if a tornado warning is issued for someone’s neighborhood:
What should I do to prepare for a tornado?
What to Do During a Tornado
Thunderstorms are most likely to happen in the spring and summer, during the afternoon and evening. However, like tornadoes, they can happen anywhere, at any hour of the day. A thunderstorm is considered severe if it produces hail at least 1 inch in diameter or has wind gusts of at least 58 miles per hour. Every thunderstorm produces lightning, which kills more people each year than tornadoes or hurricanes. Heavy rain from thunderstorms can cause flash flooding and high winds can damage homes and blow down trees and utility poles, causing widespread power outages. The Red Cross has steps you can take if a severe thunderstorm is predicted for your area:
Spring can be a time of year for flooding. Floods are among the most frequent and costly natural disasters. Conditions that cause floods include heavy or steady rain for several hours or days that saturates the ground. Flash floods occur suddenly due to rapidly rising water along a stream or low-lying area. People should be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice and head for higher ground when a flood or flash flood warning is issued. Other safety steps include:
Hurricane Season begins June 1.
And while that usually (usually!) isn’t a major factor when planning for Northeast Ohio weather, we do have plenty of disasters that we need to be aware of and plan for, here in NEO.
To that end, the Red Cross continues to help children in our communities learn about disasters that can (and do!) happen in NEO through our Pillowcase Project.
Nearly 300 students at Barberton Elementary School West had the opportunity to learn more about home fire safety and winter weather safety when kids from third to fifth grade participated in the program in February.
The volunteer team leading the education portion included members of the Advancement to Nursing program, high school students from Barberton and the surrounding communities.
To learn more about how to host the Pillowcase Program at your school, click here.
For the second year in a row, the Northeast Ohio Region has reached the goal set for the number of smoke alarm installations in homes throughout our communities.
And there are still nearly four months to go before the close of the fiscal year, June 30th.
The goal was 10,000 smoke alarms. As of Monday, March 6, Red Cross workers, volunteers and community partners had installed more than 10,100. “While we continue to seek our own internal goal of exceeding our installation totals from last year (approximately 13,000) we still must take a moment to recognize all of the hard work that has gone into achieving the national target at this point in FY 2017,” Regional Disaster Officer Tim O’Toole wrote in a message to the Northeast Ohio staff. “As one of the smallest regions in the nation we still are among the leaders in this effort.
The annoncement couldn’t come at a better time: this weekend, we are urged to TEST our smoke alarms as we TURN our clocks ahead for Daylight Saving Time. It’s also a good time to take these steps to make sure our households are prepared for emergencies:
The installation of smoke alarms is just one part of the Operation Save-A-Life campaign. Providing free home fire safety inspections and disseminating valuable fire safety information are also critical components. And volunteers perform the majority of the work involved in making our communities safer.
The fiscal year ends on June 30th. We’ll let you know how many MORE smoke alarms our volunteers, staff and partners are able to install by then.
More Lives Saved Across the Country Thanks to Smoke Alarms, Education
159. That is the number of documented lives saved as of the close of 2016, thanks to the Home Fire Campaign, which the Red Cross rolled out nationwide in 2014.
The campaign is modeled after Operation Save-A-Life, which began as a partnership between the Cleveland Fire Department and the Greater Cleveland Chapter of the Red Cross in 1992.
The 25th anniversary of Operation Save-A Life will be recognized at the 2017 Red Cross Fire and Ice Ball, which takes place on March 25 at the Intercontinental Hotel in Cleveland.
Together with corporations, community groups and other partners, the Red Cross provides residents with valuable fire safety information and installs free smoke alarms in homes where they are needed.
“Thanks to the tireless work of our volunteers, employees, local fire departments, and other partners in the Home Fire Campaign, today we celebrate 159 documents lives saved,” said Harvey Johnson, Senior Vice President, Disaster Cycle Services.
Partners helping the Red Cross achieve its goal of reducing deaths and injury due to home fires by 25% range from the employees of Lincoln Electric to a group of missionaries from the Akron Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Eight elders of the church recently installed 60 alarms in the homes of people in need.
“The group is very dedicated, said Debbie Chitester, Disaster Program Manager for the Summit, Portage, and Medina Counties Chapter. “I have worked with missionaries on disaster operations across the country. They always come through for us and the people we serve.”
Your group can be a part of Operation Save-A-Life in Northeast Ohio by sponsoring a smoke alarm installation project. Log onto redcross.org/neoosal, and click on your county to register.
The smoke alarms you install could be the next ones that save a life.