Author Archives: rachaelcapuano

Supporting our military one family at a time

Imagine living at home and caring for your children, while your partner is away fighting a war. For some, this may be a reality. For others, it is unimagineable. While troops are being deployed all around the world, their loved ones must say their goodbyes and hope for the best.

Luckily, when a military family experiences a crisis, the American Red Cross is there to help. Wherever their military service takes them, service members can rest assured that the Red Cross will deliver notification of an emergency such as the death or serious illness of an immediate family member, as well as the good news of the birth of a service member’s child or grandchild.

Take Audrey and Billy Wilkins from North Carolina, for example. Billy was deployed in Afghanistan when she was due to give birth to their second child. The Red Cross helped contact the Army to bring him home safe so he could be there for the special event. Tears flooded his and Audrey’s eyes when they were both standing in the delivery room, knowing that they were finally together again for such an important day.

Along with emergency communications across the globe, the Red Cross offers support to all military families, military personnel, and veterans. We offer courses in coping with deployment, and workshops to help families re-adjust to being together after a loved one’s deployment.

If I ever had a family member leave to serve in the military, I would feel blessed to know that the Red Cross was there to support me the entire way.

To read more about the Service to Armed Forces, visit our website: http://www.redcross.org/what-we-do/support-military-families

Local actions have international impact

Unless you have been so lucky to travel the world and visit other cultures than our own, then you probably feel as small as I do when I think about the world at large. As much as we like to appreciate the comfort of U.S. culture, we must accept that there are many others countries devastated by war.

To offer a little background, humanitarian principles are at the core of the Red Cross mission, especially in times of war. In 1949, the four Geneva Conventions formed to provide basic limits on how war is waged- to protect civilians, wounded and sick combatants, and prisoners of war. It is the duty of the American Red Cross, on behalf of the people and the government of the United States, to help to ensure that these humanitarian principles are widely understood and respected.

In times of international disasters, the American Red Cross responds by sending financial assistance, relief supplies, trained emergency response personnel, or any combination of the three. Not only does the organization assist in times of emergency, but also provides assistance to the Measles epidemic.

Something that has always inspired me is knowing that I can contribute to international relief programs from the comfort of my home. To do so, you can help in a number of ways. The most common way the Red Cross supports international emergencies is through financial assistance. You can make a donation, big or small, and you can rest assured that it will help provide food or water, or repair damaged homes, or send supplies to villages. To learn more about international humanitarian law, you can become an advocate for raising awareness to your peers.

Among many other volunteer opportunities, the Red Cross helps to restore family links. In this touching story below, the man from South Sudan was reconnected with his mother after being separated by war, thanks to the American Red Cross.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TQ2CBsDEEQs

To find a local chapter near you, visit http://www.redcross.org/find-your-local-chapter.

To learn more about our international support, visit http://www.redcross.org/support/international-support.

March is Red Cross Month!

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As I rushed to a school meeting this morning, my mind raced with assignments to get done, upcoming dates to remember, and everything I had to do by the end of the day. At the meeting with my peers and academic advisors, I was filling out some paperwork, like usual, and got to the bottom of the page that said, “Please sign and date.” I thought, “Okay, today is Friday, Valentine’s Day was just a little while ago, it’s probably February 21st…” Boy, was I wrong. Does anybody know where February went!?

As much as I was hoping time would slow down, the fact that March starts today means that GREAT things are in store for this month! Did you know that March is Red Cross Month?  Just like Mother’s Day or Valentine’s Day, we tend to designate certain times to recognize and appreciate certain people in our lives. March as Red Cross Month is the perfect time for us to get together to celebrate the everyday heroes in our communities.

Every president since Roosevelt has proclaimed March as Red Cross Month. Even the mayors of Central and Western MA proclaim this OUR month! There will be events throughout the month, like the Hometown Heroes Breakfast in Springfield, MA and the Breakfast of Champions in West Boylston, MA, both on March 28th. To find out more details visit this website: http://www.redcross.org/ma/worcester/news-events/events

Red Cross Month is an ideal time to be part of the Red Cross, and there are a variety of ways to do it. Work on a preparedness plan for your household so you will be ready for emergencies, or download the free Red Cross apps for mobile devices such as the First Aid, hurricane or earthquake apps. Most importantly become a volunteer!

The Red Cross is grateful to the people in this country for their generous support. Thanks to them, the Red Cross is able to respond to disasters both large and small, to help members of the military, provide about 40 percent of the nation’s blood supply and teach lifesaving skills.

March is a new month; let’s use this spring inspiration to celebrate and recognize our Everyday Heroes, and also become involved with the local Red Cross in your community! Stay tuned for more events and updates on March is Red Cross Month.

Go to college to get more knowledge… or just come to the Red Cross!

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When I was younger, my friends and I used to joke that some of the things we learned in school would never help us later in life. I didn’t plan on traveling to the moon, so why did I have to learn about it’s craters? The good news is that no matter how old or young you are, the American Red Cross offers classes of all types that will help for the rest of your life.

First, courses are offered in First Aid, CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and AED (automated external defibrillator). Would you know how to respond in a cardiac, breathing or first aid emergency? With the skills learned in these three classes you could save a life, or many lives. Learn how to respond to cardiac and breathing emergencies in adults, and what to do in common first aid emergencies, including burns; cuts; and head, neck and back injuries.

If you’re more interested in soaking up the sun, you can take courses in lifeguarding, from lifeguard management to administering emergency oxygen. If you take the lifeguarding course, you will not only learn teamwork, rescue and surveillance skills, but also be certified in First Aid and CPR/AED.

Or are you more interested in pursuing a career in the medical field? You can join the growing field of health care professionals as a certified nurse assistant (CNA). Skilled trainers use hands-on lessons to provide the most beneficial education in order to give quality care for the sick and elderly in nursing homes, hospitals and their own homes.

Among these classes preparedness programs. “Be Red Cross Ready” is a program that assists in keeping your family safe in any type of emergency. From flooding to wildfires, emergency preparedness keeps you informed, ready, and able to act in an emergency.

If I had known that these classes were offered, I would have spent less time on studying the crater’s of the moon and more time on being informed, engaged, and certified.

To read the complete details of each program and find the closest place to be trained, visit our website: http://www.redcross.org/take-a-class