Visit redcross.org/Volunteer to help in your community
BANGOR — National Volunteer Week is April 18-24, and the American Red Cross Northern New England Region recognizes its volunteers who continue to work tirelessly to help people in need during COVID-19.
In Maine, 680 people volunteer with the Red Cross by responding to home fires and other disasters, supporting blood collections, providing emergency assistance to military families, and much more. These individuals are among the more than 300,000 volunteers who comprise more than 90 percent of the national Red Cross workforce.
“We are grateful for the dedication of our volunteers, whose support make a compassionate difference for our neighbors in need,” said Stephanie Couturier, CEO, American Red Cross of Northern New England. “Their support during disasters and other emergencies has been more critical than ever, as families cope with increased anxiety and financial strains brought on by the pandemic.”
WHY I VOLUNTEER — Mainer Richard McKeever has been volunteering for the Red Cross for more than three years and has deployed to 13 national disaster sites. “Through my deployments I’ve seen people facing the worst situations that they’ve ever faced and doing it with great courage,” said McKeever, “I consider it a privilege that I’m able to help and happy to do so in whatever capacity I can; I’m proud to work with the Red Cross.”
HOW YOU CAN HELP –Become a Red Cross volunteer to help ensure families don’t face emergencies alone. Visit redcross.org/local/me-nh-vt/volunteer to learn more, including about our most-needed volunteer positions:
- Blood donor ambassadors and transportation specialists: Blood donations are essential to the health of our communities, and blood donor ambassadors are a vital part of this work by welcoming visitors and taking their temperatures before entering Red Cross facilities and blood drives. Visitors could include potential blood donors, people seeking help, training course participants, and Red Cross employees and volunteers. We also have a high priority need for transportation specialists to help deliver blood from our facilities to local hospitals. Currently there is a high need for volunteers for this position in Androscoggin, Cumberland, Franklin, Knox, Lincoln, Oxford, Penobscot and Sagadahoc counties.
- Disaster Action Team: Most of the U.S. disasters that the Red Cross responds to every eight minutes are local home fires, which can destroy nearly everything a family owns in a matter of minutes. Partnering with local fire departments, Red Cross Disaster Action Team volunteers connect with families by video or phone call to provide emotional support, emergency financial assistance and information to help families begin to recover. Maine has a particular need for DAT volunteers in Androscoggin, Franklin, Somerset, Lincoln, Waldo and Piscataquis counties.
- Volunteer from home (virtual positions): Help from the comfort of your own home through a wide range of virtual opportunities, including Volunteer Recognition and Appreciation Team Members.
You can also make a lifesaving difference by making a financial donation at redcross.org and, if you’re healthy and feeling well, making an appointment to donate blood at RedCrossBlood.org. Those who come to give by April 30 will automatically be entered for a chance to win one of five $1,000 e-gift cards to a merchant of choice. Additional details are available at rcblood.org/Gift.
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.