Resolve to be Red Cross Ready in 2013

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Already feeling shaky about the New Year’s resolutions you made in the wee hours of January 1st to friends and family who will never hold you to them? Not keeping those dates with the treadmill? The Red Cross has a list of easy resolutions to keep. We promise that following through on the list below will make you a healthier, happier, safer and more effective member of your community.

We challenge you to resolve to be Red Cross Ready. There are several ways to be Red Cross Ready, and these are some of the top ten. Even though the year has already started it’s never too late.

  1.    Make an Emergency Kit

This is important and can make an enormous difference for your household. Get other family members involved and use the list on the Red Cross website to guide the process.

2.      Download Red Cross Apps

The Red Cross’s new Hurricane App is incredibly useful and comforting. I loved having all that important information on my phone when Sandy hit Philadelphia in November. The download takes 30 seconds and we have several apps with a wealth of information. Check us out!

3.      Become a Red Cross Volunteer

There is nothing more rewarding that helping others in need. Enough said.

4.      Learn CPR

It usually takes a single day to get your certification. Not really much time when you think about what you are learning to do. Imagine having the ability to save a life in a medical emergency. Is that a worthwhile skill? You bet.

5.      Make sure there are working smoke detectors in the house

Our area has lost four people since January 1st to home fires where no working smoke detectors were found. Interviews with neighbors in the wake of these fires revealed that those who died were valued elderly members of their communities who had been living in their houses for decades. The solution is to care more for one another. Check your own smoke detectors. Help your neighbors check theirs.

6.      Talk with family and make an emergency plan

Talk about escaping your home during a fire. Designate a meeting place on the outside. Talk about what to do if you are asked to evacuate during a hurricane or flood. Having a plan relieves anxiety and will serve you well when confronted with a real disaster scenario.

7.      Know your region and what types of natural disaster may occur

This is a simple as knowing what to prepare for. For instance, if you know you are in a flood zone, you can prepare for evacuation.

8.      Inform others of being Red Cross Ready

Again, care for your neighbors. Encourage your neighbors to visit the Red Cross website. The more people prepared for a potential disaster, the stronger the community as a whole.

9.      Attend a Red Cross training class

We can help you learn to be a fantastic lifeguard, an excellent babysitter, an outstanding caregiver, a skilled nurse’s aid and a strong swimmer among other useful skills. Check it out!

10.  Give Blood

This involves lying down in a relaxed state for around 45 minutes. Anyone feeling capable of that?

— Posted by Jennifer Ingram and Sarah Peterson

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