Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Hope Admist the Chaos

As I entered the scene of my first fire I couldn’t help but be apprehensive; adrenaline rushing through my veins, my mind prepared to face whatever was to come. When people compare their life’s experiences to a scene in a movie you never truly understand what they mean until it happens to you. The experiences I lived through that day are as surreal today as they were when they occurred in real time.

Early in the morning on November 30th a fire erupted in a home in Fresno County. Flames licked the vulnerable wood, destroying everything in its path. Five people, including a 6-year-old girl escaped.

Eastbound Manning Avenue near McCall near Selma was partially shut down to give crews room to work. The road has since reopened, but a Fresno County family now has nothing left.

The flames moved so quickly, Wayne Little didn't even have time to grab shoes. His neighbors lent him some after he got out of the house. "I don't even have my wallet. No money, no food, Nothin," said Little.

Just before 6 a.m. the family awoke to flames in the attic. "So at that point, I started yelling 'Everybody Out!' I went and grabbed my daughter."

He, and the rest of his family got out, but couldn't save their pets.

"I could hear the cat crying... I tried to get him out and I couldn't. It burned fast."

Firefighters say the age and instability of the 1920's-era home just added to the dangers at the scene.

"We had power lines down, gas line ruptured, so firefighters decided to take defensive action on the home," said John Dominguez with Fresno County Cal-Fire.

The family watched their home and possessions burn to the ground -- grateful for their lives -- but left with little else.

The family says they were renting the house and have no insurance. Firefighters are still investigating how the fire started. They have ruled out arson.
While standing by the main entrance waiting to enter the home a gentleman approached one of the Red Cross responders to say thank you for being there to help and for providing assistance to fire victims. Only then did I realize, as I watched the man walk away, how influential the Red Cross fire response team is in the Valley and how many people we actually help throughout the year.

As I walked into the home the damage became more severe; wall plaster laden the floors and water pooled on the landings. I looked around to take everything in: the half broken down door laying on it’s side mocked the residence, shouting ‘security no longer resides here, comfort is no longer welcome’; the bright white clouds from outside reflected themselves in the shards of glass that layered the carpet; the smell of burning wood and smoke hovered in the air like an oppressive cloud, never ceasing to evaporate.

The only things standing were the skeleton-like walls. I took another step deeper into the black hole that someone once called home. Nothing. Everything was completely destroyed. Black soot settled on every surface leaving no trace of life. In a child’s room the juxtaposition of an innocent toy lying next to scraps of wood and ash almost made me laugh because it should never belong there amongst that kind of destruction. I could try to describe what I saw but could never do it justice. In that moment I was filled with anger and a sadness, which consumed my heart. How could this happen, I thought? Why does this happen?

No one should ever have to experience that kind of loss. But fires do happen. And no matter how much pain it leaves in its wake I now know that being a part of an organization that allowed me to help is one of the greatest gifts I could receive.

These incidences occur every day and affect hundreds of people. What these people went through is irrevocable and only now, after seeing what I saw, do I truly understand why it is part of my job as a Red Cross Volunteer to spread hope to those who have lost everything.

I am a proud volunteer at the Red Cross Central Valley Chapter.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Heart Related Emergencies at Home

Do you have heart problems in your family? I do. It's scary. Especially with my parents getting older and my Sister and I being away from home. Three of my family members have suffered or died from heart attacks or sudden cardiac arrest in my lifetime (and I'm not that old!).

Sorry for the doom and gloom on a Monday morning, but it's reality. The great news is that there's an extra precaution you can take against heart related emergencies when your mom and dad (or brother, cousin, grandpa, uncle and creepy step-aunt) refuse to eat better or get out and exercise.

I bet you think I'm going to say, "learn CPR," right? Close! But no. CPR requires your presence. If a family member you're concerned about has a significant other, caretaker or someone else with them on a regular basis, there's a better solution.

It's personal automatic external defibrillators, more popularly know as AEDs, I'm talking about. You know - those things you see on hospital shows where they yell "clear!" then shock the patient's heart? Those, but smaller (and less dramatic).

With a few hours of training and the purchase of an personal AED, one can have quick access to a tool that greatly increases the survivability of a heart related emergency. According to the Red Cross, 50,000 of the 250,000 sudden cardiac arrest related deaths occurring yearly in the US could be prevented if an AED were present.

Now, when we see AEDs used on those hospital shows I mentioned, the patient's heart has usually stopped - a depiction that's not completely accurate. AEDs are appropriate for irregular, sporadic or absent heart rhythms. That means heart attack, angina, AMI and sudden cardiac arrest are all candidates for AED use.

Sound complicated? The biggest worry is probably, "how will I know when to use it?". You'll learn more in class, but let me just put this one fear to rest: Modern AEDs measure heart rhythms and advise the user whether or not to administer a shock automatically. All you have to do is listen to instructions and push a button. Easy!

Having a personal AED in the home or office accompanied by someone with proper training is a great precaution to take against heart related emergencies.

For more information about AEDs, how you or a loved one can take an AED class, or to learn more about the Red Cross, visit these links:

What In the World, Wednesday! (Yes, I'm aware it's Monday)

Welcome to What in the World, Wednesdays! In which we consolidate the international Red Cross and Red Crescent news into one list of bite-sized links for you. It's a non-comprehensive sampling of the larger and/or more intriguing aspects of our global work...
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO: In areas that can't be accessed by trucks, ICRC workers are using barges and motorcycles to get aid to people still recovering from last year's violence.

TOGO: After heavy flooding, it's essential to reduce the risk of disease from contaminated water. That's why around 100 Togolese Red Cross volunteers specially trained in community health work are going door-to-door in the areas worst affected by Togo's recent floods to explain the importance of washing hands and of treating water before drinking it.

SERBIA: The Red Cross of Serbia continues to provide support to people affected by this month’s earthquake, which hit the city of Kraljevo. In addition to distributing food and other items, a psychosocial support program has now begun, helping people to deal with the shock of the disaster and the impact on their lives.

WORLDWIDE: The ICRC has announced the winners of the "Young Reporter" competition, who will travel to a country that has been affected by armed conflict – Georgia, Lebanon, Liberia, the Philippines or Senegal – and will be given the opportunity to cover a local ICRC humanitarian project.

ICRC = International Committee of the Red Cross
IFRC = International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving for the Red Cross!

Yes! We should all be thankful for the Red Cross--just like fire fighters, we are rescuing people all the time. Yes, we rescue them from facing nowhere to lie down in safety after a fire or any other disaster, small and large. We just don't stop, ever. Check out this great story from a Red Cross Volunteer serving on our Disaster Action Team...

Why am I thankful, personally?

After my first house fire, I stood alongside a family in the frigid night, all and kids in pajamas, helpless as their second story apartment smoldered. They lost everything, but their skins. There were hundreds more over the years. I went to wildfires where only the nails remained. To hurricanes where families continued to live in the smashed up hulls of their trailer homes. And what have I learned? Don't fuss over what you have, care about what you give.

It's the little ways in which I've changed which mean big things in my life. I went through four years living in San Francisco with three pieces of furniture. When I moved back to Fresno, my parents felt sorry for me and donated some of theirs. I never missed the furniture. It really doesn't matter. Through my Red Cross lens, I saw this all being gone in an instant.

Tomorrow and always, I give thanks for the privilege I have to help other people every day. And to know that my life is richer because of the Red Cross, even though, I'm back to having no furniture:)

From our Red Cross family to yours, we wish you a safe and Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Prepare-aphenalia: The Swiss-Tech BodyGard Emergency Tool

Now that Daylight Savings Time has occurred I find that the moment I leave the Chapter office  I must be sure that my headlights are on. This essentially has posed a problem because I am never remember to turn them off when I get out of the car. So you can imagine my frustration last Thursday evening when after meeting a few of my friends for dinner (my Birthday dinner, no less) that I had forgotten to switch off my lights. But that's okay because I am a proud AAA Cardholder. After placing the call and requesting service, which never make the mistake and say you are in a safe location. I am convinced that gives them the idea that you are content with sitting in your car in a parking lot, but I digress. So after about thirty minutes my car was getting a bit stuffy and then I realized that without battery power I would not be able to roll down my windows, which lead my disaster-ready mind to think, what would I do if I couldn't get out of my car in an emergency situation? So the research began, and I stumbled upon our newest addition to the "prepare-aphenalia" family, introducing the Swiss-Tech BodyGard Emergency Tool.

The newest product in the company’s line of emergency preparedness tools, the Swiss-Tech BodyGard Emergency Tool will get you out of sticky situations in the wilderness. Ideal for walking, biking or hiking, the BodyGard comes equipped with a built-in alarm to ward off attackers or signal for help. A lightweight tool that attaches to your key ring for convenient access, this Swiss-Tech emergency tool features a flashing red distress light, automatic glass breaker, seatbelt cutter, thermometer, tire gauge and LED flashlight. It also comes with a tough ABS housing and stainless-steel tools and it glows in the dark for night easy retrieval. The tool starts in price at $29.99. 

This little number made it's way right on to my Christmas list, however I think I should ask Santa continue to pay my AAA membership because knowing my curiosity I would probably place the BodyGard against my window to prove if it actually worked and then we would a whole set of new problems. Happy Tuesday everyone!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Holiday Safety...Easy as Pie!

The holiday season is upon us, and the Central Valley winter along with it. The American Red Cross offers some safety tips to prepare you and your family for a safe and enjoyable holiday season.

“During the holiday season there is the possibility of cold weather or heavy fog like we saw the few years,” said April Henry, Regional Health & Safety Administrator for the Red Cross.   “Any preparation you do today will help your family safely get through the kinds of disasters which affect our area.”

As you travel during this holiday season make sure to prepare ahead of time to be protected against extreme weather conditions.  Exposure to cold can cause injury or serious illness, including frostbite and hypothermia. The likelihood of injury or illness depends on such factors as physical activity, clothing, wind, humidity, working and living conditions, and a person's age and general state of health. But we can all be a bit safer with some forethought.
Follow these tips to stay safe in cold weather and enjoy your holiday season:
  • Holiday traveling and winter can be a dangerous combination. Allow extra time when traveling. Monitor weather conditions carefully and adhere to travel advisories.
  • Keep a winter storm survival kit in your car. This should include blankets, food, flares, chains, gloves and first aid supplies.  To purchase a disaster or emergency road kit, please visit our online store at www.arccentralvalley.org
  • Designate a driver. When attending a party, always designate a non-drinking driver. If you are the host of a holiday gathering, be sure there are non-alcoholic beverages available for guests who are driving.
  • Buckle up. During the holiday months, people travel more than ever. Wearing a seat belt is the easiest and best way to prevent injury in a motor vehicle collision. Ensure that all passengers are also wearing safety belts.
  • Always be careful with holiday candles. Avoid using candles during parties. Take special care when burning candles and make sure they are never left unattended. Be sure they are kept away from decorations and other combustible materials. Don't leave children unattended in a room with lit candles, and always keep candles, as well as matches and lighters, out of the reach of children. Never display lighted candles in windows or near exits.
  • Decorate only with flame-retardant or noncombustible materials. If guests will be smoking, provide them with large, deep ashtrays and check them frequently. After the party, check inside and under upholstery and in trash cans for cigarette butts that may be smoldering. If you plan to hang stockings on your fireplace, do not use the fireplace for fires.
  • Dress appropriately before going outdoors. The air temperature does not have to be below freezing for someone to experience cold emergencies such as hypothermia and frostbite. Wind speed can create dangerously cold conditions even when the temperature is not that low. If possible, dress in multiple thin layers so you can adjust to changing conditions. Avoid overdressing or overexertion that can lead to heat illness.
For more information on how to create an emergency Winter preparedness kit, contact your local Chapter of the Red Cross today at (559) 455-1000. Preparedness can also be spelled CPR. Breathe life back into your CPR Skills and give the greatest gift of all this Holiday Season....LIFE! 

Friday, November 19, 2010

Be a Red Cross Monster!

Do you want to be a Red Cross Monster? Well join us December 18th, 2010 at 7:35pm at the Selland Arena in Downtown Fresno for a night of hockey! The Fresno Monsters will be wearing a special Holiday Jersey sponsored by the American Red Cross Central Valley Chapter. These Jerseys will be auctioned off after the game, with all proceeds going to your local Chapter of the Red Cross. 

Would you like to join other Red Cross fans in the Party Zone? Well you can! Volunteer to sell 10 Monsters Ticket Vouchers and be entered to win two tickets to sit in the Party Zone. Just in case you don't know what the Party Zone is...it's a very cool lounge area with plush couches and seating. You definitely do not want to miss out! 

Monsters Ticket Vouchers are $10.00 and can be redeemed at ANY Monsters game in the 2010-2011 Season (excluding Playoffs). To request your tickets today, contact Alex Villa at (559) 455-1000 ext 104.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Quick Update!

Most fires are an accident. But rest assure that when disaster does strike, your local American Red Cross Chapter will be there to help you pick up the pieces.

What In The World, Wednesday!

Welcome to What in the World, Wednesday! In which we consolidate the international Red Cross and Red Crescent news into one list of bite-sized links for you. It's a non-comprehensive sampling of the larger and/or more intriguing aspects of our global work...
SRI LANKA: In Nugelanda, it's not just disasters like floods and droughts, but also wild elephant attacks that pose a real danger. The Ampara branch of the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society is distributing flashlights to shoo the elephants away, and also working on other safety measures. HAITI: More than 1,000 trained Haitian Red Cross volunteers have now fanned out across the country to provide important and potentially lifesaving hygiene information to help prevent the spread of cholera.
The January earthquake not only left thousands of newly disabled Haitians without legs and arms, it also completely destroyed one of the most important rehabilitation clinics in Haiti designed to provide long-term specialized care. The American Red Cross and ICRC are now helping to fund the reconstruction of this rehab clinic and its workshop and training facilities.

INDIA: Indian journalists have been taking part in a competition organized by the ICRC and the Press Institute of India, encouraging people in the media to understand humanitarian values and promoting high-quality reporting on the topic.

PHILIPPINES and INDONESIA: University students took part in international humanitarian law moot court competitions organized, in part, by the ICRC.

ICRC = International Committee of the Red Cross
IFRC = International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Holiday Mail for Heroes

Have you sent your well-wishes to a servicemember yet this year? Head on over to the Holiday Mail for Heroes homepage (right after you watch the below videos) to find out how. Check out these PSA's from Wilmer Valderrama and American Ferrera on how you can give back to the Red Cross.

Your local Red Cross Chapter will be at Sierra Vista Mall on Friday, November 19, 2010 at 5:00pm to welcome to arrival of Santa Claus as well as to create and send cards to our Heroes. For more information contact Anya Goosev at (559) 455-1000.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Go Green for the Red!

Happy America Recycles Day! Well actually, it was yesterday, yes I dropped the ball on that one. However, it inspired me to think that while we should always be recycling, it might be a great time to examine your emergency kits. Properly recycle your batteries, check your food and water, etc.

Speaking of being a little more green, have you heard of Green Gift Monday? On Cyber Monday (or anytime between now and the end of the year) we encourage you to go green with a gift from the American Red Cross Holiday Catalog.

Last year on Cyber Monday consumers spent nearly $890 million dollars online. Imagine the difference we could make if just a fraction of that money was spent on responsible, meaningful holiday gifts.

Monday, November 15, 2010

How Has Your Pet Changed Your Life?

Pets are considered part of the family. They greet you when you walk in the door, can put a smile on your face when you’re having a rough day and are full of affection. Give back to your pets by learning about pet safety! If your dog started choking, would you know what to do? If there is a disaster, a fire or tornado, do you have a plan that includes helping your pet?
The American Red Cross Central Valley Chapter offers great Pet CPR/First Aid courses, as well as pet first aid kits that can help your pet in a flash if something were to happen. Be prepared and check out www.arccentralvalley.org for information on signing up for a class or buying a kit!

Leave a comment and tell us, how has your pet changed you life? We want to know! Submit a photo of your pet to 
alex@arccentralvalley.org and it could be turned in to an ad on our homepage! Try to model your photos on what you would include in a disaster kit. If for any reason you and your furry (or scaly or feathered) friend are separated, it is important that you have a picture that proves ownership. Make sure that you send in a picture that includes both you AND your pet!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Quick Update!

You never know when a Dino-Disaster will strike! Be sure to have your workplace prepared in First Aid and CPR. Our First Aid training will prepare you to deal with cuts, scrapes, fractures and of course bites! Don't let your lifesaving skills become extinct! Contact the Red Cross today!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

What In The World, Wednesday!

Welcome to What in the World, Wednesday! In which we consolidate the international Red Cross and Red Crescent news into one list of bite-sized links for you. It's a non-comprehensive sampling of the larger and/or more intriguing aspects of our global work...
CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC: The ICRC has begun distributing food to 55,000 residents, internally displaced persons and refugees. It's the biggest relief operation the ICRC has ever carried out in the country.

AZERBAIJAN: Earlier this week, acting as a neutral intermediary, the ICRC repatriated an Azerbaijani citizen, formerly interned in Armenia, and the body of an Armenian citizen who had died in Baku in October.

PAKISTAN: Stagnant pools of flood water create a high risk of mosquito-borne diseases like malaria and dengue fever. The ICRC is distributing 200,000 mosquito nets to help prevent the spread of disease.

INDIA: This week, India launched a series of mass measles vaccination campaigns, supported by technical assistance from the American Red Cross and its Measles Initiative partners. In 2008, three out of four children who died from measles were in India. By the end of 2012, the country hopes to have protected 134 million children against this deadly and highly contagious disease. To support the worldwide efforts of the Measles Initiative, visit our holiday gift catalog and make a donation that will save another mother’s child.

ICRC = International Committee of the Red Cross
IFRC = International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Would You Survive An Alien Invasion?

I must admit that, even though I realize consciously that it’s fake, I was jolted into disaster mode just by watching the trailers for the new movie Skyline set to release this Friday. Piles of destroyed cars and upturned asphalt—all that wreckage would certainly make for a big humanitarian disaster! If that were to happen, the American Red Cross Central Valley Chapter would be on the scene. Whether it’s a natural disaster or an act of terrorism (by giant alien robots), the Red Cross is there to help. So, in case of an extraterrestrial attack, here’s how I think we might pitch in, and how you could help, too:

Learn First Aid: 

When you get hit by a laser or your car is crushed by a giant robot, injuries are going to happen. Be ready to help by learning first aid! Learning how to distinguish minor injuries from major ones can save a life. You’ll learn how to put a splint on a broken bone, treat cuts and burns and prevent further injury.

Become a Volunteer:
The Aliens would certainly throw our cities into chaos. But Red Cross volunteers are trained to deal with highly stressful situations and to help people cope with disasters. Your apartment building is set on fire by evil intergalactic monsters? Our volunteers will be there to make sure you have food, clothing and shelter. We do the same for regular people in the Valley every day.

Make a Disaster Supply Kit: 

If you need to leave town because, well, the Aliens are wreaking havoc, it’s good to have a kit to grab and go. Put important items in there, and a little cash, since the Aliens have infiltrated all of our networks and systems which will prevent all of our ATM’s from working.

Emergency Tracing Services: 
Was your spouse of child abducted? I wouldn’t worry, the Red Cross has been providing tracing services for over 100 years, we would be able to locate them, even aboard the mothership, because Red Cross Disaster Teams Members never stop working. Now whether they have been brainwashed into the intergalactic rebellion and no longer the person they were, well…that’s kinda your problem.

Service to Armed Forces: 
Okay, okay, maybe it is OUR problem. Luckily, our SAF response team has been offering grief counseling to those who have had family members deployed or dealing with the loss of a loved one. So if worse comes to worse, we would be there to provide support and comfort to you in your time of need.

So what do you think? How would you react during an Alien invasion? Would you Survive? For more information on how to be prepared, contact your local American Red Cross at (559) 455-1000.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Are You Red Cross Ready?

Brandon Mayfield, Proud Volunteer
 "Initially coming into the American Red Cross, I did not know what to expect, although throughout my childhood I have been aware of their importance throughout society. As a volunteer, my group and I were in charge of helping with an awareness building campaign. It consisted of a contest amongst local high school students. Their challenge is to create a 45-60 second public service announcement portraying the message of being “Red Cross Ready,” which encourages people to get a kit, make a plan, and be informed. We successfully completed a press release, brochures, and newsletters to bring awareness to local high schools and companies. 

Throughout the process, I enjoyed working with American Red Cross. The staff is amazing and always willing to help their volunteers. Before volunteering, I did not even know that there was a Central Valley Chapter. Most people do not! For that reason, it is important to reach out to certain age demographics because the youth are our future. The event that we organized for the high schools is a perfect source in order to adequately engage awareness to this age group.

In the end, my experience with American Red Cross will never be forgotten. I plan to continue my volunteerism with them in the near future and expand their amazing services. Also, my group and I have been selected help judge the videos that will be sent early in 2011. At this time, I am honored to take part in this successful event hosted by the American Red Cross. " -Brandon Mayfield

Fore more information on the "Red Cross Ready" video contest or to request a participants packet, please email Alex Villa, Health & Safety Coordinator or by phone (559) 455-1000 ext. 104.

Brandon Mayfield joins the Central Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross as a proud volunteer and marketing intern from California State University, Fresno.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Did You Know 97% Of Our Workforce In The Central Valley is Purely Volunteers?

Sandra Santiago-Proud Volunteer

Community members from all areas throughout the Central Valley either come through our office or have experienced the services offered from the American Red Cross and are inspired to volunteer and give back their most precious resource; their time. During August 2010 I met Sandra and she has been an absolute joy and resourceful addition to our many volunteer teams! 
Sandra is one of our Local Heroes with a heart that is as big, if not bigger, than the six counties our Chapter serves.  Sandra comes to the American Red Cross with a passion for Public Health and Safety Education.  She is the President of the Public Health and Safety Club and the Chair of the Student Health Advisory Board which is the liaison between students and the campus health center at California State University, Fresno. Sandra began her volunteer career as our Community Ambassador attending local Community Events and Health Fairs educating our community about our services.  While continuing to attend events on our behalf, Sandra pursued the Fundamentals of Instrutor Training to become our Volunteer Instructor for CPR/First aid classes.  Sandra is now pursuing the training to teach our HIV/Aids Educational course.

Along with finishing her Bachelors of Science in Public Health with Community Health option, Sandra has found the perfect fit with our organization in educating her community members on the importance of preparedness and our services. Despite Sandra's busy schedule with work, school and personal commitments, one may wonder why she gives her extra time to the American Red Cross? We were curious too....so we asked her.  Here is her response:
"I volunteer with the American Red Cross because I know that I am making a difference. If I just help one person who helps someone else I have made a small difference in the world. I feel that in order to make a change in the world it starts with just one person and with American Red Cross I feel that I have a better reach to the community. If I am instructing a CPR class or just providing information I feel better because I know that I am making a difference for the future." -Sandra, November 2010.
Whether you are a stay at home mom, accountant, student, trainer, real estate agent, secretary, farmer or school teacher...you have the skills that we are looking for! Becoming a volunteer for the American Red Cross Central Valley Chapter is as easy as 1-2-3....

VOLUNTEER APPLICATION & ONLINE BACKGROUND CHECK: Print and submit your completed volunteer application to our office by mail or fax.  You can complete your online background check at: https://www.mybackgroundcheck.com/order/arcvts/

MEET AND GREET: Once our office receives your application, our Volunteer Coordinator will contact you to set up a time to meet.  The purpose of the “meet and greet” or “volunteer interview” is to get a better understanding of your areas of interest and where we can match your skills with a volunteer assignment.

NEW VOLUNTEER ORIENTATION, FULFILLING OUR MISSION CLASS: Attend a 3 hour group orientation course that will introduce volunteers to the role of the Red Cross in preparing for, responding to, and recovering from emergencies and disasters.  We ask all volunteers to complete this orientation to further familiarize you with all of our services.  You never know when a disaster will strike at home…. and we will need your help during a local disaster.

If you are interested in becoming a member of our Disaster Action Team, there is are additional steps to complete: Disaster Services Human Resources (DSHR) Paperwork and additional Disaster Action Team (DAT) training.

Contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Anya Goosev, to become apart of our team!

Be The Best Babysitter On The Block!

Learn how to be the best babysitter on the block. The American Red Cross has revised its popular Babysitter’s Training and has classes available for young adults looking for ways to earn extra money this summer.

Designed for 11 to 15 years old, the Red Cross Babysitter’s Training provides young adults who plan to babysit the knowledge and skills necessary to safely and responsibly give care to infants and children under their watch. The course is fun and fast-paced with hands-on activities, exciting video, role-plays and lively discussions. Young adults can impress potential clients by earning their Babysitter’s Training certificate from the American Red Cross. Parents can also encourage or register a potential babysitter to take the class.

The Red Cross Babysitter’s Training will help participants to:

· Develop leadership skills - role modeling, respect, communication, and taking action

· Gain the confidence to make smart decisions and stay safe in any babysitting situation

· Learn how to develop a babysitting business - safe techniques for finding jobs

· Write resumes, interview for jobs, and learn professional work behavior for babysitting

· Keep themselves and others safe – prevent and handle emergencies such as choking, cuts,
bee stings, other injuries and apply basic first aid

· Help supervise and engage children in good behavior by applying appropriate techniques and choose safe, age-appropriate games and toys

· Perform basic childcare skills - how to properly handle feeding and diapering, bedtime and discipline issues

Students will receive Red Cross Babysitter’s Training Kit at the end of the course which includes valuable babysitting resources that they can take home with them:

· Red Cross Babysitter’s Handbook packed with great information and resources including full-color skill sheets to use in class and while on the job

· Red Cross Babysitter’s Training Emergency Reference Guide compact and easy-to-carry, the booklet provide step-by-step instructions to handle common emergencies

· Red Cross Babysitter’s Training Interactive CD-ROM provides tools to sun your babysitting business featuring an activity book with games, songs, and other activities; electronic babysitting client organizer; business card and resume templates; and much more

For more information or to register for an upcoming course at your local Red Cross Chapter visit us online or call (559) 455-1000.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Quick Update!

Is your workplace prepared? If not, we can help! Your local American Red Cross Chapter can train your staff in lifesaving CPR/AED skills, not to mention first aid too! Contact your local Chapter today!

What In The World, Wednesday!

Welcome to What In The World, Wednesday! In which we consolidate the international Red Cross and Red Crescent news into one list of bite-sized links for you. It's a non-comprehensive sampling of the larger and/or more intriguing aspects of our global work...
HAITI: As Hurricane Tomas heads toward Haiti, the Red Cross is helping people get ready for the storm and also preparing to respond afterward.

PAKISTAN: Three months since the floods, high waters in the southern province of Sindh still prevent more than 1 million people from returning home. Red Cross and Red Crescent workers from around the world (and right next door) continue to provide aid.

INDONESIA: Red Cross workers are still busy providing food, shelter and water for thousands of evacuees after the double disasters of a tsunami and a volcanic eruption.

SERBIA: Volunteers sprung into action after a 5.3 magnitude earthquake that damaged electricity and water supplies in the city of Kraljevo.

ITALY: Red Crossers are assisting thousands of evacuees who were forced out of their homes when torrential rains caused floods throughout the entire northeast of the country.

ICRC = International Committee of the Red Cross
IFRC = International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies