American Red Cross Youth The official site of the American Red Cross Youth! Wed, 02 Feb 2022 00:21:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 American Red Cross Youth 32 32 34344787 February Spotlight: Los Angeles Region Volunteers Wed, 02 Feb 2022 00:21:12 +0000

On January 1, over 50 youth and young adult volunteers participated in the Los Angeles Region’s First Aid Support to the Rose Parade.

Every year, the Rose Parade is hosted to kick off the Rose Bowl, one of the most anticipated games in college football. The event typically features colorful floats, marching bands and equestrian units. However, working behind the scenes to ensure the Rose Parade’s success is a team of hundreds of people, among them Red Cross volunteers. 

This year, 54 Red Cross high school and college Red Crossers participated in the event as part of the Los Angeles Region’s First Aid Support. After passing Basic Life Support, Oxygen Administration, First Aid and Bloodborne Pathogen courses, they assisted their leads from 4:00 a.m. PT to well into the afternoon “with a professionalism [that] I have only seen in hospital settings,” remarks Government Relations Director Christina Thomas. 

These youth and young adult volunteers worked a grand total of 432 hours and made an unforgettable impact on the Red Cross mission. Thank you so much for your hard work, Los Angeles Region volunteers. The Red Cross is lucky to have you as part of our family.

February Monthly Focus: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Tue, 01 Feb 2022 18:57:03 +0000

The Importance of Diversity

Diversity is what makes each individual special – whether that’s along the dimensions of race, ethnicity, gender, age, or beliefs. By understanding what makes one and others unique, an environment with wider perspectives is fostered. This environment allows for stronger ideas and a better understanding of the best ways to approach a problem. Every person holds different experiences which enhance creativity – it allows us to look at information from unique perspectives. At the American Red Cross, we strive to stay committed to diversity throughout all of the work we do. We understand that through our commitment to an inclusive environment we bolster the strength found both internally and beyond our doors. These efforts allow us to work across the country to develop and deliver lifesaving services to the many communities we serve.


EDGE Trainings

In order to learn more about diversity, educate yourself by watching one of the many EDGE Trainings listed below. If you’re new to this platform, check out this guide to EDGE! Then you can search through to find some of these trainings:

  • Difficult Conversations  
  • CCS – Cultural Competency Series (multiple episodes)
    • “The Effects of Racism, Trauma and Chronic Stress on Health” (February 2020)
    • Time to Pivot – Inclusion from Remote (April 2020)
    • COVID Impact in Indian Country and the American Red Cross Partnership Response (May 2020)
    • From COVID-19 to George Floyd – Exploring Our Emotions and Moving Forward with Intention and Purpose (June 2020)
    • Black Leadership Experiences in Red Cross Mission Delivery – a Panel Discussion (July 2020)
    • The Value of Allies to Diverse Groups (August 2020)
    • LULAC and the State of Latinx Communities in the Face of COVID-19 and Civil Awakening (September 2020)
    • See Us! Native Americans in Search of Inclusion (November Cultural Competency Series session)
    • The Importance of Disability Identity in Disaster Response (October 2020)
    • “Social Injustice Compounded – Racial Minorities in the LGBTQ+ Community” (December 2020)
    • “TikTok, Instagram and other Languages of the Younger Generations” (January 2021)
    • “The Realities of Sickle Cell Disease: Hope is on the Horizon” (February 2021)
    • The Magic Word is Yet – The Key to Recalculating After Disorder
    • The Resilience of Women and the Power that Comes from It
    • Perspectives of Change: a Decade After the Repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell
    • Voices of Alaska: Listening and Learning from Alaska’s First Nations
    • Busting the Model Minority Myth: the Asian American and Pacific Islander Experience Today
    • From Military Life to the Civilian Experience: Common Challenges Veterans and Military Families Face in the Transition
    • The Roadmap for Building Cultures of Preparedness
  • L2A – Learning to Action (multiple episodes)
    • L2A Empowered Conversations About Diversity
    • L2A Uncovering Unconscious Bias
    • L2A Why Words Matter: Using Inclusive Language
    • L2A Building Belonging At Work: Everyday Actions YOU Can Take
    • L2A Microaggressions: Intent vs. Impact
    • L2A Anti-racism Action: Changing Systems with Candor, Compassion, and Courage
  • COVID 19 Vaccine: “What you Need to Know”
  • Celebrating Diversity and Embracing Inclusion
  • Dismantling Anti-Asian American/Pacific Islander Bias in the Workplace Training
  • Allyship in Action 


Youth Diversity Pledge

Lead your fellow youth and young adult volunteers in a Youth Diversity Pledge this month! By doing so, engage in an insightful discussion on the challenges and things that make us all unique. By clicking on this link, learn how to successfully facilitate a Youth Diversity Pledge session. This pledge was created to empower youth and young adults to be advocates and leaders for the American Red Cross through education surrounding diversity and inclusion issues faced by the organization. As volunteers, we can best serve our diverse communities by celebrating our differences and learning about what makes each of us unique. By being constantly and consistently mindful of the people around us, we can create a positive volunteer environment for both the people we volunteer alongside and the communities we serve. 

  • Access the National Youth Council’s discussion from November 2021 here 
  • Tips for talking about challenging topics 


Resource Groups

Help promote diversity within the Red Cross by joining or participating in some of the Resource Groups below!  


For more ways to get involved, check out these documents 

  • Red Cross Seven Fundamental Principles: The Red Cross Seven Fundamental Principals function as the foundation of The American Red Cross and Red Crescent societies around the globe, which work to prevent and alleviate human suffering. Together, these seven values provide a structure to guide our actions and also unite Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers under a common identity and purpose.   
  • American Red Cross Diversity Mission & Vision Statement: This document lists mission and vision statements directly related to diversity and inclusion. 
January Monthly Focus: National Blood Donor Month Wed, 12 Jan 2022 19:28:24 +0000

What is National Blood Donor Month?  

January is National Blood Donor Month! Every two seconds in the United States, someone needs blood. You may have volunteered at blood drives or blood donation centers before—if so, you’ve been participating in one of the Red Cross’s fundamental lines of service. We need the support of all our volunteers, especially youth and young adults, to help Blood Services with their own work! Find out how to get involved below.  


Why help? 

  • Blood is needed in order to ensure that blood products are available at 2,500 hospitals nationwide. Blood transfusions are used to help patients under all kinds of circumstances, including surgeries, cancer treatments, anemia, and childbirth.
  • The American Red Cross is an intrinsic part of our nation’s blood supply, providing about 40% of the nation’s blood and blood components.
  • Your time saves lives. A blood donation takes about an hour from start to finish but the actual donation itself only takes between 8 to 10 minutes. This short commitment can save as many as three people with each blood and platelet donation.
  • With the ongoing pandemic, blood is needed now more than ever before. The Red Cross is currently experiencing the worst blood shortage in over a decade. As a result, some hospitals have had to defer patients from major surgery, including organ transplants. Read more about it here.
  • Watch these short stories which elaborate on the importance, benefits, and impact of giving blood:


Host a Blood Drive: 


Earn Rewards by Donating Blood!  


Different Ways to Get Involved:  


Other Resources 

January Spotlight: Za’hyre Creamer Tue, 04 Jan 2022 22:14:06 +0000

Za’hyre Creamer helped lead her school, Albany State University, to a 3rd Place finish in the HBCU Virtual Blood Drive Challenge in June

From June 3-16, 2021, 16 historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) across the nation participated in the Red Cross’s HBCU Virtual Blood Drive Challenge. This campaign, which was part of the Closing the Sickle Cell Gap initiative, aimed to raise awareness about sickle cell disease (SCD) and inspire more Black individuals to roll up their sleeves and donate blood. As a person who knows someone affected by SCD, Za’hyre Creamer chose to represent Albany State University as a student ambassador because she wanted to spread the word about the need for Black donors and give back to the community.

In her role, Za’hyre worked with both school faculty and her Red Cross region (the Georgia region) to organize and promote a virtual blood drive during the established time frame. Thanks to her leadership, Albany State University recruited enough blood donors to earn the school a 3rd Place finish in the challenge.

Thank you so much for your work, Za’hyre! We can’t wait to see how else you will make a difference.

Field Ambassador Biographies Sun, 02 Jan 2022 15:35:42 +0000 2021-2022 Field Ambassadors


Ana Sadler

D.C.adler is the Field Ambassador for the National Capital and Greater Chesapeake Region. She is a senior at Briar Woods High School and is the President of the school’s Red Cross Club. This will be her second term as an officer for her school’s club as last year she was the Youth Administrative Board Representative. Ana participated as a youth advocate and lead of the Outreach Specialization Group in her region’s International Humanitarian Law (IHL) Youth Action Campaign (YAC) Task Force. This year she is a Coordinator for an IHL YAC task force. Ana also volunteers as a Biomed Greeter for the ADVANCE Study located in D.C.. Outside of volunteering with the Red Cross, Ana sits on the National Panel as a Conference Representative for the Girls Academy Soccer League and she is the Vice President of the Shanti Bhavan Northern Virginia Chapter.


Andrew Dong

Andrew Dong is a sophomore attending Iowa City West High School in Iowa City, Iowa. He is the founder and president of the Iowa City West High School Red Cross Club, and is also a Blood Donor Ambassador and Disaster Action Team Associate. His favorite part about the Red Cross Mission is how it allows for young students in high school to make a large impact in their community. As a Field Ambassador, he hopes to organize events that teach CPR for free to local youth in his region who are in high school and junior high. Outside of the Red Cross, Andrew runs varsity cross country and loves volunteering at his local retirement community, where he has received the President’s Volunteer Service Award Gold.


Bella Kim

Bella Kim is a senior at Arnold O. Beckman High School and is the current Field Ambassador for the Southern California Region. She also serves as the President of her school’s Red Cross club and as the Fundraising Committee Lead of the Youth Advisory Council for the Orange County Youth Services Department. Throughout her high school years with the American Red Cross, she has participated in the summer Leadership Development Camp, staffed for the virtual Growing Leaders Of the World (GLOW Red) Camp, and been a part of the Orange County Chapter’s Volunteer Connection Committee as well as their Fundraising Committee. As a Field Ambassador for her region, Bella is excited to work with the National Youth Council to execute different initiatives and amplify youth engagement in her region. She aspires to promote an environment for all youth to unite and champion the American Red Cross mission as well as emphasize the importance of diversity. Working alongside other passionate leaders, Bella intends to form a lifelong connection with the Red Cross and continue pursuing her passion in college.


Cassandra Leo

Cassandra Leo, a junior at Quarry Lane High School, is the Field Ambassador for the Northern California Coastal Region. She began her Red Cross journey during her freshmen year, first serving as a Blood Donor Ambassador and Workforce Engagement Onboarding Team Member. She has since then become involved with her American Red Cross community through other fascinating opportunities. Throughout her three years, she founded her school’s club chapter and now oversees other Red Cross Clubs in the region as the Club Liaison Coordinator for the East Bay Youth Executive Board. She is excited to continue engaging in youth involvement and hopes that as a field ambassador, she is able to connect her region to engaging initiatives in a collaborative environment that can further spark a passion for service and the Red Cross community. Outside of the Red Cross, she runs her own photography business and is training to become a lifeguard.


Clara Yu

Clara Yu is a junior at the Union County Academy for Allied Health Sciences and is the Field Ambassador for the New Jersey Region. She first became involved in the Red Cross during her freshman year and currently serves as the Vice President of the UCVTS Red Cross club, where she plans blood drives, preparedness events, and fundraisers. She is also an active contributor of the youth International Humanitarian Law (IHL) initiative and the Prepare with Pedro preparedness program. Clara is also the Club Relations Committee Central Jersey Chapter Lead of the New Jersey Youth Council (NJYC), where she writes and edits the monthly newsletters. Clara looks forward to working with other passionate volunteers across the nation in expanding Red Cross and increasing youth involvement. Outside of Red Cross, Clara enjoys competitive swimming, playing the cello, watching Netflix, listening to music, and hanging out with friends!


Hans Bach-Nguyen

Hans Bach-Nguyen (he/him/his) is a high school senior at Adolfo Camarillo High School in Ventura County, and is excited to be serving as this year’s Field Ambassador for Central California. Hans’s involvement with Red Cross began his sophomore year when he joined the Adolfo Camarillo High School Red Cross Club. Inspired to lead, he became the club’s president his junior year and led projects such as Sound the Alarm and organizing blood drives. Through impactful initiatives, he grew the club to be the largest club at his school and the most active Red Cross club in Central California. This year, he’s serving his second term as a co-president of his Red Cross club and Ventura County’s co-coordinator of youth. His main goal this year is to improve youth engagement across his region through available communication. Outside of Red Cross, you can find Hans enjoys composting, hikes, and digital design.


Katherine Son

Katherine Son is a senior at West Career & Technical Academy in Las Vegas, Nevada. She is currently president of the WCTA Red Cross Club and has been involved with the club since her freshman year of high school. She began her Red Cross journey when she joined the club as a freshman and further deepened her relationship with Red Cross when she re-founded the club during the 2020-2021 school year. Katherine’s focus is to increase awareness of local and global current events and provide a fun and rewarding volunteering experience to other high schools. Katherine is also involved in many other service clubs and projects such as HOSA, Key Club, and National Honors Society. Katherine hopes to create a lifelong connection with Red Cross and continue to help others after high school.


Katie Clark

Katie Clark is a junior at Columbia River High School in Vancouver, Washington and serves as the Field Ambassador for the Cascades Region. She is in the International Baccalaureate Program. Interested in volunteer work, public health, and the biomedical field, Katie began volunteering for the Red Cross her freshman year to learn more about blood donation. She currently serves as president of the Southwest Washington Youth Council, chair of the board of representatives for the Cascade Board of Directors, and as a member of the Cascades Youth Executive Board. During her term, she hopes to bolster local youth engagement by making more wide-spread events accessible to clubs in the region. To work towards this goal, she has invited student representatives from Oregon to the council in the hopes of creating a separate partner youth council. In the long term, Katie hopes to volunteer abroad for the ICRC to learn about health care practices and humanitarian efforts in various countries. In her free time, Katie enjoys swimming, playing piano, and painting.


Katie Nakai

Katie Nakai is a sophomore at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School and is the Field Ambassador for the Massachusetts Region. Katie started her journey with the Red Cross as a blood donor ambassador the summer before her freshman year. In her freshman year Katie created a global platform for high school students interested in medicine. She shared her volunteer experiences with over 2,000 students and helped many start volunteering with the red cross. During her sophomore year she became a member of the Massachusetts screening team, helping prospective volunteers. Katie is excited to work with others who are passionate about the red cross and looks forward to expanding youth engagement.


Maia Campbell

Maia’s first experience with the Red Cross was in September of 2018. Hurricane Florence had viciously struck the North Carolina coast and many people were displaced. As she saw her parents volunteer all weekend at the Red Cross temporary shelter at a local high school, collecting donations, delivering supplies, and checking in on evacuees, she remembered asking, “What could the kids, do to help?” Since that summer a fire lit beneath her and a passion for community activism, youth leadership, and volunteerism was ignited.



Melissa Lee

Melissa Lee is a senior at Davis Senior High School and represents the California Gold Country Region. Her involvement with the Red Cross began in her sophomore year and she now serves as the President of her high school’s Red Cross Club. Additionally, she is the chair of the Gold Country Region’s Youth Executive Board. Melissa enjoys connecting with people from all walks of life to volunteer for a greater cause. Her goal as a Field Ambassador is to increase access to and quality of opportunities in the Gold Country Region. During her free time, Melissa enjoys figure skating, playing badminton, watching Netflix, and spending time with her golden retriever. 


Nicole Tsaroukian

Nicole Tsaroukian is a junior at Clark Magnet High School and serves as the Field Ambassador for the Los Angeles Region. She began volunteering for the Red Cross in her freshman year of high school and now serves as the Graphics lead for her high school’s Red Cross Club. She also participated in the READYTeens summer program as well as the Leadership Virtual Development Conference. Through this position, Nicole hopes to collaborate with her fellow Field Ambassadors not only to create successful projects but also to build lasting effects and connections. She is excited to work alongside other passionate volunteers to increase youth involvement and can’t wait to leave her mark in the Red Cross community. Outside of volunteering, Nicole enjoys watching films/making movies, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.


Niya Patel

Niya Patel is a senior at Hawken High school and represents the Northern Ohio Region. She began volunteering for the Red Cross after the summer of her sophomore year as a Youth Blood Donor Ambassador. She founded her school’s Red Cross Club the following year, and raised money to make first aid kits for a local Women’s Shelter. Niya hopes to create more youth volunteer opportunities in the Northern Ohio region, and increase youth volunteerism in general as a Field Ambassador. Her favorite aspect of volunteering is being able to meet new people, and work with people to help the community stay safe and healthy. In her free time, Niya likes to bake, dance, and play soccer.


Olivia Lombardo

Olivia Lombardo is a senior at Minisink Valley High School in Orange County, New York. She is beyond honored and excited to serve as the Field Ambassador for the Eastern New York Region. Olivia has been volunteering in various nursing units at a local medical center as well as shadows a medical professional in her prospective field. She wishes to inspire youth engagement region-wide, initiate valuable service projects and develop meaningful relationships with the incredible Red Cross volunteers in the area. In the future, she hopes to continue her involvement with the American Red Cross as she pursues her medical career.


Owen Zhang

Owen Zhang is a senior at Bellaire High School in Houston, Texas. His Red Cross volunteering experiences can be traced back to his middle school years when he first attended a “Pass the Bucket” event at a Harlem Globetrotter game. Owen currently serves as the TGCR Youth Service Council Executive Chair, where he plans and coordinates youth projectsand events for the entire region, including blood drives, STA campaigns, disaster preparedness trainings (RedCrossReady), youth socials, diversity calls, and fundraising events. Additionally, as the region’s IHL Lead Coordinator, Owen oversees regional IHL outreach events and directs several teams in the mission of engaging and spreading awareness about IHL in the community. His favorite events are Sound the Alarm campaigns and Missing Map-A-Thons, which he has trained hundreds of Red Cross volunteers on. Owen has received the President’s Volunteer Service Gold Award, Points of Light Inspiration National Honoree, and the TGCR International Service Award, as well as the Most Exceptional Youth Volunteer Award for his ARC work. In his free time, he loves to play volleyball.


Patrick Bednarz

Patrick Bednarz, a senior at BASIS Goodyear High School in Goodyear, Arizona, is the Field Ambassador for the Arizona and New Mexico Region. Patrick first became involved with the Red Cross in 2019 when he joined his school’s IHL Youth Action Campaign team. Since then, Patrick has served as both a IHL YAC regional coordinator and a lead advocate in his region. As part of the IHL YAC Campaign program, Patrick attended the IHL YAC summits in 2020 and 2021. Outside of volunteering with the Red Cross, Patrick swims competitively for the YMCA Westside Silver Fins, and he serves as a commissioner on the City of Goodyear’s Youth Commission and as President of his school’s Pre-Med club. As a Field Ambassador, Patrick hopes to extend his volunteerism with the Red Cross outside of the IHL YAC program to have an impact on other areas of need.


Rebecca Stephenson

Rebecca Stephenson is a junior at Inglemoor High School and is the current Field Ambassador for the Northwest Region. She has been involved with the Red Cross for two years, including being the Red Cross Club President at her school for the 2021-22 school year. Rebecca has successfully led projects with broad participation, like Holiday Mail for Heroes. She hopes to grow participation in her club this year as well as youth engagement, and looks forward to being more involved with the Red Cross and its mission. Outside of her involvement with the Red Cross, Rebecca enjoys writing, listening to music, and being a HOSA club officer at her school. In the future, Rebecca hopes to pursue a career in medicine.


Riddhi Bansal

Riddhi is a current junior at East Lyme High School and  serves the current field ambassador for the Connecticut/Rhode Island Region. When she began volunteering with the Red Cross as a freshman, she wanted to get involved in the Red Cross to help people and learn more about the Red Cross. Throughout her time at the Red Cross, she has served as a Coordinator for the IHL Youth Action Campaign. Outside of the Red Cross, she’s involved in HOSA, Model UN, and Women in Stem. She is also a varsity tennis player and a dancer. Additionally, she has EMT training and volunteers in hospitals to become a medical doctor one day.  As a Field Ambassador, she hopes to engage more youth in her region, educate youth on Red Cross topics, and positively impact the community!


Saima Hoque

Saima Hoque is a senior at Deer Park High School and the Field Ambassador for the Greater New York Region.  She has been a dedicated member of the Red Cross ever since her freshman year and currently serves as her school’s Red Cross club president. Additionally, Saima is an International Humanitarian Law (IHL) Youth Action Campaign Advocate who is excited to lead a creative, fun-filled campaign that will promote awareness of IHL within her local community. In the past three years as a member and officer, she has participated in and organized several successful events, such as Vaccinate-a-Village and the annual Deer Park Red Cross Scavenger Hunt. As a Field Ambassador, Saima is eager to work alongside her like-minded colleagues and deepen her connection with the youth volunteers of her region. Outside of Red Cross, she is actively involved in her community; she serves as the president of five clubs and continually draws inspiration from the Red Cross volunteer spirit. Besides this, you can always find Saima whipping up a new recipe in the kitchen or immersing herself in a good book.


Sanjana Velu

Sanjana Velu, a junior at William Mason High School, serves as the Central and Southern Ohio Region Field Ambassador. Her involvement with the American Red Cross began two years ago as a freshman in high school when she founded a Red Cross Club at her high school. She currently serves as Co-President of the Club and  leader of Central and Southern Ohio region’s youth council. Within her roles, she has helped organize projects such as a region-wide food drive, a region-wide newsletter, Measles and Rubella fundraisers, Preparedness Fairs, Totes of Hope for homeless veterans, Blood Donor cards, blood donation campaigns, and many more. In her free time, Sanjana enjoys reading, running, and baking. As Field Ambassador, Sanjana hopes to increase youth membership and involvement in the Central and Southern Ohio Region.


Sanjeev Varma

Sanjeev Varma, a student at C. Leon King High School is the current Field Ambassador for the Central Florida region. Sanjeev started his red cross involvement this recent (2021) summer and has been an active participant in the weekly Be Red Cross Ready presentations. From there he took his volunteerism to the next level by serving as the Central Florida Region’s Field Ambassador and his club’s Treasurer. Sanjeev Varma enjoys bringing together ideas of many volunteer and other individuals in order to foster an active environment of Red Cross participation and enjoyment. Through his position as Field Ambassador, Sanjeev hopes to work together with other students in order to have a successful year not only as a Field Ambassador, but as an active member of his community and Red Cross Club.


Srijan Oduru

Srijan Oduru is a senior at Green Hope High School and is the Field Ambassador for the Eastern North Carolina Region. He began volunteering as a Red Cross Blood Donor Ambassador in middle school and is now a Regional Committee Member and a volunteer in his school’s Red Cross Club. Srijan’s favorite part of being a Red Cross volunteer is connecting personally with other volunteers, whether they be teenagers or senior citizens. As a Field Ambassador, he is especially excited to work in concert with the National Youth Council to promote initiatives on a national scale, and to collaborate with the regional Board of Directors and Youth Engagement Team to support regional youth volunteer clubs. Outside of the Red Cross, Srijan is highly interested in biology, loves listening to music and plays the harmonium, and can be frequently found in his driveway playing basketball.


Vybhavi Kotireddy

Vybhavi, a senior at Alpharetta High School, is the Field Ambassador for the Georgia Region. As she volunteered at her first blood drive during the summer of her freshman year. There, she enjoyed positive interactions and impactful service and was inspired to begin her Red Cross journey. Since then, she has become an active volunteer involved with various projects, including fundraisers and youth action campaigns. Vybhavi also serves as a Volunteer Recruitment Team member and finds it exciting to facilitate the onboarding process for new members. She has initiated the launch of the Georgia Youth Advisory Council, which she now leads with a team of members. She also serves as the Vice President of her high school club, in which she has organized Disaster Preparedness Fundraisers, Card projects, and kit drives, as well as other activities. Vybhavi hopes to continue encouraging youth involvement and facilitate greater communication across clubs. She is excited to work with many other leaders and make lasting relationships!


Yuvraj Bhallar

Yuvraj began his Red Cross Journey in 2019. In this time, he has worked on numerous regional and national projects in Volunteer Services, Information Technology, Disaster Cycle Services, Biomedical Services, International Services and Finance. It is a true joy for him to serve in so many capacities and to make a difference. He possesses great interpersonal skills and is a team player. When Yuvraj is not volunteering for the Red Cross, he enjoys reading, playing basketball, swimming, and golfing. He is ecstatic to be working with other Field Ambassadors and with the National Youth Council.



For more information on the Field Ambassador program, please visit this page.

December Spotlight: Arinjoy (AJ) Das Tue, 07 Dec 2021 19:25:54 +0000

AJ, a member of the Arizona and New Mexico Region’s Diversity and Publicity Committee, created a fire safety video for San Juan County that was awarded an $18,000 grant.

When Arinjoy (AJ) Das’s local chapter leader reached out to him about creating a fire safety video for the Red Cross, he was more than on board. As a passionate videographer and Red Cross volunteer, he saw this project as a great way to intersect two core aspects of his life. “When I’m armed with a camera, I can bring into the spotlight stories of values and compassion and revelations of struggles and triumphs. This time, the story would be on the importance of fire safety.

The editing process was simple: AJ made a montage of relevant photos and overlaid it with a voiceover. He was thrilled at how it all came together, and so was his county – his finished video received an $18,000 grant and is now in the works of becoming public.

AJ advises other volunteers looking to engage with the Red Cross mission in creative ways to “use your passion for a good cause. There are no limits on how you can go about it, as long as you’re able to impact your community in a positive way.”

Amazing work, AJ! We wish you the best of luck on your role with the Diversity and Publicity Committee and on your budding Red Cross journey.

November Spotlight: Allison Zhu Tue, 02 Nov 2021 05:33:36 +0000

Allison Zhu, a Northern California Coastal Region volunteer, pivoted her school’s Red Cross Club to adapt to COVID-19

As the world shut down at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, Allison Zhu saw a need to rally the San Mateo High School Red Cross Club to take action. Thanks to her leadership and despite the restrictions of a virtual environment, the Club thrived.

For example, Allison ran an event called “Match the Mask” in which volunteers made masks and donated them to local hospitals. The initiative grew to involve other Red Cross Clubs in the area and ultimately 500 masks were donated. Other events she has organized include an online retreat, Missing Maps MAPathon and Points of Privilege activity.

Allison advises volunteers looking to get more involved with their community to think of the impact that they will make. “Even if you’re just one person, your contributions can make a world of difference to the people that you are helping.”

Amazing work, Allison! We wish you the best of luck on your Red Cross journey and can’t wait to see what you will accomplish in the future.

National Youth Involvement Month 2021 is Finally Here! Mon, 01 Nov 2021 19:51:00 +0000

National Youth Involvement Month 2021 has officially started! To learn more about this initiative, check out this page. To sign up as a participant (Club/Individual), please click here.

October Monthly Focus: National Fire Prevention Month + Week Thu, 14 Oct 2021 23:41:26 +0000

National Fire Prevention Week 

Each year during the week of October 9, we observe Fire Prevention Week, a campaign sponsored by the National Fire Protection Association that strives to educate the public about how to stay safe if a fire breaks out. This year’s Fire Prevention Week theme is “Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety”, which emphasizes the importance of knowing the different sounds that smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and what to do if they go off. 

The Red Cross also encourages you to test your smoke alarms and practice your two-minute home fire escape drill. Knowing what to do makes a world of difference, so make sure that you and your family are well prepared! Although Fire Prevention Week is over, it is never too late to begin planning with your family members so that we can all be ready for fires year-round. 


Home Fire Campaign 

Because home fires make up the vast majority of the disasters that the Red Cross responds annually, the organization aims to reduce fire-related casualties in the US by 25%. To achieve this goal, the Red Cross launched the Home Fire Campaign back in 2014, which has since saved over 1,048 lives, installed over 2.2 million smoke alarms, made almost 1 million houses safer, and reached almost 1.7 million youth. Visit to learn more about this initiative and how you can get involved with it. 


Other Ways to Get Involved 

In addition to engaging with Fire Safety Week and the Home Fire Campaign, there are other things you can do to practice and advocate for home fire safety: 

  1. Lead a Virtual Fire Safety Canvassing event
  2. Take EDGE trainings
  3. SAF Innovation Exchange: Home Fire Campaign presentation (37 minutes)
  4. BIO05TC505 Fire Prevention Training (90 minutes) 


More Resources to Check Out 

October Spotlight: Cecilia Nguyen Tue, 05 Oct 2021 05:42:51 +0000

Cecilia Nguyen hosted a Virtual Marathon back in March that raised $1,676 for Disaster Relief.

As the Fundraising Chair of the Texas Gulf Coast Region Youth Service Council (TGCR YSC) last year, Cecilia wanted to organize a fundraiser that was both virtual and interactive. After extensive research, she decided to host a virtual marathon called Running4Relief that benefited the Red Cross’s disaster relief efforts.

The planning process involved many steps. For example, Cecilia had to plan the event logistics and create the marketing materials such as stickers and a flyer. After everything was approved by her region, she reached out to adult and youth leaders throughout the Texas Gulf Coast Region and asked them to promote the virtual marathon. Ultimately, Cecilia was able to raise $1,676 for the Red Cross.

For those interested in hosting their own virtual marathon, Cecilia’s biggest advice is to “stay on top of your game! Organizing a virtual marathon takes a lot more time and networking than you may initially think. Give yourself enough time to troubleshoot any potential problems so that your fundraiser can be successful.”

Thank you so much for your work, Cecilia! We look forward to seeing what you will accomplish in the future with the Red Cross.