Celebrating Chapter Centennial at BASH

BASH 2017 not only brought together Red Cross supporters, family and friends, it also marked the 100th anniversary of the founding of Red Cross chapters in Stark County, Dover and New Philadelphia.

About 285 people enjoyed dinner at the MAPS Air Museum in North Canton.  Several placed bids on some coveted auction items, including an adorable puppy.

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Jennifer McNemar offered the winning bid for Kimber

As usual, many guests played along with the M*A*S*H theme, dressing in Hawaiian shirts, medical attire and military uniforms.  Thanks to their generosity, about $95,000 was raised to help support Red Cross disaster relief work in what is now the Stark and Muskingum Lakes Chapter.

“We had a great evening,” said Kim Kroh, Chapter Executive Director. “I am so appreciative of the way our community supports the Red Cross.  Their support helps us provide vital services to people when they experience a home fire or some other disaster.”

Additionally, Heather Zuniga received a special award for performing CPR on Don Joliat after he was pulled from the Meyers Lake YMCA pool. Her efforts saved his life.

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You can help support the work of the Red Cross by visiting redcross.org/donate and selecting YOUR LOCAL RED CROSS from the drop down menu under support.

 

 

 

Blanket Made of Red Heart Yarn and Love

Linda Evans

15 months.  That’s how long it took Linda Evans of West Farmington, Ohio to #StitchAHug.  That’s the hashtag redheart.com established in 2016 to allow customers to support the Red Cross, by providing patterns for blankets.

“I was in the middle of a move,” Linda said. ” Otherwise, it probably wouldn’t have taken so long.”

The white spread with the traditional Red Cross knitted in the center arrived at Northeast Ohio headquarters in early May, accompanied by a short note that read, in part, “I hope whoever gets it will be okay!”

Red Cross workers often provide blankets to people who have been forced to flee their homes by fire, flood, or other disasters.  In Northeast Ohio, the Red Cross responds on average to three such disasters every 24-hours.

That’s a lot of blankets.

“I’m grateful I have never needed your help.  The Red Cross is exceptional in everything they do, and I don’t give back nearly enough, so this project sounded like a perfect match.”

Linda’s blanket touched the heart of Renee Palagyi, Regional Senior Disaster Program Manager. “What a wonderful gesture on her part.  It shows how our mission touches the lives of people in so many ways, those who need our help, and those who want to reach out and help others.”

Knitting a blanket is just one way to support Red Cross efforts to help others.  You can also volunteer your time, or make a donation.

Linda hopes her blanket is big enough to “maybe snuggle up two folks.”  And she writes, “I might even do another one…but not right away :)”

 

 

Red Cross Fire and Ice Ball

Fundraising Continues with KeyBank Challenge

A message from CEO Mike Parks

Thank you to our amazing Red Cross supporters who helped us host a successful “Fire & Ice Ball” on Saturday, March 25, 2017!  We couldn’t have pulled this off without all of your efforts…from table sponsorships, donations of auction items and programs,  sharing invitations with friends and family, and dedicating your evening to our lifesaving mission…it was a wonderful celebration!

To those of you in attendance, we hope you enjoyed the experience as much as we did!  We certainly missed all of our friends who couldn’t join us, but we sincerely appreciate your support from afar.

For all of our Red Cross friends, we hope you will plan to join us at a future event, blood drive or neighborhood fire safety walk soon.  We could not fulfill the humanitarian mission of the American Red Cross here in Northeast Ohio without your dedication to, and support of, our mission!

A special thank you to Beth Mooney of KeyBank for graciously accepting our Steve D. Bullock Humanitarian Award for 2017.  We are truly honored and grateful for the Inspirational Match of $25,000 that Beth announced on behalf of “Operation-Save-A-Life”.   Those funds will help our collaborative efforts to install new smoke alarms in every home, one neighborhood at a time.

If you would like to support “Operation-Save-A-Life” and take part in this Inspirational Match Campaign, please log onto  https://www.redcross.org/arcneohio-pub   to make a donation on behalf of the American Red Cross and KeyBank.   Please feel free to share this message with your friends.  Thank you for your generosity and commitment to the American Red Cross of Greater Cleveland!

Best regards…Mike

Here are some photos from the Ball.  See dozens more in our Flickr album here.

2016, a Year That Set New Weather Records

West Virginia Floods 2016

In a year that set new records for severe and devastating weather, the Red Cross provided more assistance to the hundreds of thousands of people impacted by these disasters all across the United States than in the past two years combined.

In 2016, 32,000 Red Cross volunteers responded to 180 significant disasters in 45 states and two U.S. territories including wildfires, storms, flooding, Hurricane Matthew and other emergencies. Volunteers from Northeast Ohio deployed to disaster affected areas nearly 140 times this year.

“People impacted by disaster are facing what can be their darkest days. This year a seemingly endless chain of disasters affected hundreds of thousands of people and the Red Cross was there, helping,” said Mike Parks, Northeast Ohio’s CEO. “But we need your support now to continue providing help to families affected by disasters.” The Red Cross depends on generous financial donations to provide services.

As of December 4, the Red Cross provided the following help to people impacted by disasters across the country this year:

  • Opened nearly 800 emergency shelters, providing 206,000 overnight shelter stays to people forced from their homes
  • Served more than 4.1 million meals and snacks
  • Distributed more than 2.1 million relief items

Home Fires Continued to be Largest U.S. Disaster Threat

Declan&OldAlarmAmidst all of these devastating events, home fires continued to be the largest disaster threat in the United States. During 2016, the Red Cross provided casework assistance to help 79,000 families recover after a home fire left them with nowhere else to turn. The Red Cross and thousands of local partners are also working to help prevent home fires, deaths and injuries. Since 2014, at least 116 lives have been saved through the Red Cross Home Fire Campaign, locally known as Operation Save-A-Life, a total of 574,000 smoke alarms have been installed, and 625,000 youth have been taught about fire safety.

Here in the Northeast Ohio Region, the Red Cross responded to over 970 home fires across 22 counties and provided more than $720,000 in financial assistance to those local families affected by disasters. Through the help of community partnerships, the Red Cross installed over 13,000 smoke alarms from July 2015 to June 2016.

World’s Largest Humanitarian Network Responds to Global Disasters

Before Hurricane Matthew hit the United States, the storm made landfall in Haiti, leaving widespread flooding, damage to infrastructure and major crop and livestock loss. The American Red Cross delivered critical relief, including supplies to reduce the increased threat of cholera in the country.

A massive wildfire in Alberta, Canada threatened dozens of communities in the spring. The American Red Cross deployed almost 100 employees and volunteers to help.

Ecuador Earthquake 2016A 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Ecuador in April, cutting off remote communities and causing severe damage to the country’s infrastructure. Red Cross societies from all over the world stepped in to help.

 

2016 has been the deadliest year for refugees in the Mediterranean Sea, with more than 4,000 people dead as they try to cross from Libya to Europe. The American Red Cross has contributed funds to help meet the needs of refugees and migrants seeking safety and a better life in Europe, including the deployment of a disaster specialist aboard a rescue vessel in the Mediterranean Sea.

HOW YOU CAN HELP The Red Cross depends on the generous support of the American public to assist people affected by disasters. If you would like to help, please consider making a donation today by visiting http://www.redcross.org/neo, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

Red Cross Helps Cleveland Family Displaced by Fire

Children Receive Stuffed Toys to Help Them Through Crisis

Cara Hunt was at home with her three young children when their upstairs caught fire in September.

The Cleveland family escaped unharmed, but the fire stripped them of their basic necessities and left them with no place to sleep.

 

As firefighters worked to extinguish the blaze, two American Red Cross workers responded to offer relief. They gave each child a stuffed animal toy to help calm their fears, and provided financial assistance to cover temporary lodging for the family, whose home was deemed unlivable.

Cleveland Fire Battalion Captain Chris Posante, who connected Hunt with the Red Cross workers, underscored the importance of this support.

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Red Cross worker Mark Cline offers assistance to resident Cara Hunt

“These are good people who are suffering through no fault of their own,” Posante said. “The help you give them is much needed.”

You can help people who have been driven from their homes by fire when you donate to Red Cross Disaster Relief, at redcross.org/donate, or by calling 1-800 RED CROSS.  You can also text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

 

 

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Red Cross worker Jeremy Bayer offers stuffed toys to children driven from their home by fire

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Volunteers Offer Valuable Respite to Responders

Provide Canteen Services at Crash Site

Local, state and federal investigators on the scene of the crash of a corporate jet in Akron have a place to go, just a few steps away, to receive food and drink.  The Red Cross stationed an emergency response vehicle stocked with sandwiches and snacks, coffee and water just a few feet away from where the jet crashed into a four-unit apartment complex.

15 adults who lived there and in two neighboring residences have been displaced by the crash, and received initial financial assistance from the Red Cross for food, lodging, and other immediate needs.  Continuing assistance available includes help with recovery plans, mental health services and referrals to appropriate agencies.

Note the wording on the Emergency Response Vehicle: “All American Red Cross Disaster Assistance is Free.”  The Red Cross responds to about 70,000 disasters every year, thanks to the power of our volunteers and the generosity of our donors.  Interested in becoming a volunteer?  Apply online here. You can donate online to help others who suffer a disaster, or call 1-800 RED CROSS.  Or text the words red cross to 90999 to make an automatic $10 donation.

President and CEO of the American Red Cross, Gail McGovern speaks at event in Northeast Ohio

Gail McGovern, CEO of the American Red Cross, speaks at the City Club of Cleveland.

Gail McGovern, CEO of the American Red Cross, speaks at the City Club of Cleveland.

Gail McGovern spoke at the Cleveland City Club on June 20, 2014 about the transformation process that turned the American Red Cross into a 21st century emergency response and blood services organization.

She spoke about how the organizaiton was able to eliminate a $209 million operating defecit in two years after she began at the Red Cross in 2008. By consolidating the organization by getting all chapters on one email system, a common donor database, and a single website the Red Cross was able to become better stewards of the donor’s dollar. McGovern also shared some of the Red Cross stories she hears from people around the world, including one from a man who gave 103 gallons of blood — helping over 2,400 people — simply because he thought it was the right thing to do.

To view video from the June 20th event, click here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3L5sIP52vx0