Monday, May 13, 2019

In Case You Missed It - May 13

Sound the Alarm comes to Yonkers with volunteers, community partners and elected officials. (Photo: Matt LaMonica)
Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 108 adults and 31 children following 45 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

Last Week in Review

Upcoming Events and Opportunities

    Monday, May 6, 2019

    In Case You Missed It - May 6

    National American Red Cross CEO, Gail McGovern, Greater New York Chapter CEO, Josh Lockwood,
    Board members Ashleigh Banfield, Tom Morris Jr., and John Osborn, and other partners in front of hundreds
    of volunteers who were ready to Sound the Alarm at the kickoff.
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 183 adults and 56 children following 40 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

    Last Week in Review

    Upcoming Events and Opportunities

    Tuesday, April 30, 2019

    In Case You Missed It - April 29

    Red Cross volunteer standing next to the delivered personal hygiene kits for the Long Island Coalition for the Homeless. 
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 84 adults and 32 children following 44 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below). 

    Last Week in Review

    Upcoming Events and Opportunities

    Friday, April 26, 2019

    Three Questions: Shirley Leung

    By Doris Liu

    "Three Questions …" is an American Red Cross in Greater New York blog series featuring staff, volunteers, and partners who help carry out our humanitarian mission. Through these short interviews, we hope to shine a light on our different programs and get to know those who make this work possible.


    Shirley at the state EOC in Alabama following tornadoes last month. 
    Shirley Leung is a data analysis and research expert who has volunteered with the Red Cross for almost two years. Her extensive background working with non-profits as well as her GIS mapping skills have proved invaluable in her Red Cross work. Shirley has supported local programs here in NYC and lent her expertise and dedication after large-scale disasters far from home. Last fall she deployed to California and more recently she traveled to Alabama to support Red Cross activities after devastating tornadoes.

    How did your background lead you to the American Red Cross?

    I have a background in non-profit and economic development as well as investment banking. A lot of those things contain data analysis that I do with the Red Cross. I’m really big on research. I’ve also been volunteering for a long time, since 1995, at other non-profit organizations, like charity races and children’s foundations. I did a lot of translation for patients since I’m bilingual. I feel like I’ve continued to do what I like to do here at the Red Cross. It is a way to invest in and contribute to my community. The Red Cross has a volunteer culture that I like because it’s doing something meaningful. I know I can contribute my skill set and my previous experiences to work here. In my previous experiences, I learned about GIS mapping, which is really helpful for the Red Cross fire safety campaign. 

    What has been your favorite project so far at the Red Cross?

    Being deployed to California [wildfires] for 12 days. Sitting in the EOC overnight might sound crazy for a favorite moment, but it really helped me learn a lot about these kinds of crises and how they are managed by multiple agencies at the federal level. In California, I was at the state EOC and so we were working with FEMA and other state level agencies. They would come to us [the Red Cross] for aid during the wildfires. We basically liaise with these agencies and help operate in shelters as well as with citizen evacuation. It’s complicated because when you see a fire on the screen it’s spreading one way and once the wind changes the direction the fire will spread to a completely different location. So, you really have to monitor everything. We also have to work with our partners to make sure that if something’s wrong in the shelters, it can get fixed. You never know what’s going to come up.

    Recently, you deployed to Alabama to support after a large-scale tornado. What did you do there and how did the team cooperate with the local agencies?

    I was at the government operation center representing the Red Cross, working with the Alabama county emergency management agency. Basically, what we did was serving as a conduit between the local agencies and the Red Cross. Working with local agencies, we work with information exchange because the Red Cross has a really strong damage assessment team. We went out to the field, saw the damaged and assessed it, and brought the data back. Then, we mapped it [the damage] so that the local agency directors could see it, and they came to us to get more information so that they can make their own decisions like setting up a multi-agency resources center. The agencies then used our data to predict and figure out how many families may need help, and what types of help they would need. Since I do mapping, I was able to help the GIS team.

    What I learned the most is that because this disaster was very localized, we learned things about the community that we did not know before. We had to do outreach work through the churches. Because a lot of them [residents] lost transportation and there’s no car to drive them. Because it’s hard for them to access the resources, we had to go out and reach out to the churches in order to reach out to people. Also, the community was very closely knit. They didn’t go to the shelters, because the churches provide funding for them to stay in the hotels and their families take them in.

    My biggest takeaway is that the local government really relies on organizations like the Red Cross to help them get through disasters. Because of our resources, including our knowledge, material, volunteers, technology, and expertise in disaster management. Therefore, we are always ready. We got a lot of training and a lot of us have deployment experiences, so we can just all drop in and start to work and made things happen.

    To learn more about the American Red Cross response to last month's tornadoes in Alabama, click here. 

    Wednesday, April 24, 2019

    In Case You Missed It - April 22

    Red Cross volunteers standing with executive staff and holding their awarded certificates of recognition.
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 129 adults and 60 children following 41 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

    Last Week in Review 

    Upcoming Events and Opportunities

    Monday, April 15, 2019

    In Case You Missed It - April 15

    Staff of Red Cross Metro New York North Chapter celebrating the
    retirement of Red Cross volunteer of 20 years, Jackie Jones.
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 109 adults and 33 children following 46 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

    Last Week in Review



    Upcoming Events and Opportunities

    Monday, April 8, 2019

    In Case You Missed It: April 8

    Council Member Margaret Chin standing with Red Cross Greater New York CEO Josh Lockwood in a press conference to promote the 2019 Sound the Alarm campaign. 
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 223 adults and 54 children following 57 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

    Last Week in Review

    Upcoming Events and Opportunities

    Monday, April 1, 2019

    In Case You Missed It - April 1

    Red Cross volunteers standing outside of the Today Show expressing
    their support for the Red Cross on Giving Day. (Photo: Gregory White) 
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 82 adults and 39 children following 35 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

    Last Week in Review

    Upcoming Events and Opportunities

    Monday, March 25, 2019

    In Case You Missed It: Mar 25

    Long Island Red Cross staff receiving a proclamation from
    Nassau County Executive Laura Curran as part of Red Cross month. 
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 189 adults and 35 children following 48 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

    Last Week in Review

    Upcoming Events and Opportunities

    Monday, March 18, 2019

    In Case You Missed It - Mar 18

    Red Cross Disaster Responders at the 4-alarm apartment fire in Yonkers last Tuesday (Photo by Kevin Suttlehan).
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 109 adults and 22 children following 45 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

    Last Week in Review 

    Upcoming Events and Opportunities
    • Our Summer 2019 Unpaid Internship Program is open for applications! Red Cross Internships are a rare opportunity to explore and enrich your future career prospects while serving others. Our 10-week Summer Program is open to undergraduate or graduate students. The Program starts Monday, June 3rd. Click here to apply.
    • We are actively recruiting for the following volunteer positions: Volunteer Screener, Home Fire Campaign Team Member, Disaster Action Team Member, and Community Preparedness Education Program Team Member. Apply today at www.redcross.org/volunteer! For more information, please contact recruitmentgny@redcross.org.
    • March 19, 22, 25: Red Cross blood drives will take place from 2 to 7 p.m. at the Greater NY Red Cross building located at 520 West 49th Street, Manhattan. Schedule an appointment to donate today!
    • May 1: Every day seven people die in home fires and the Red Cross wants to do everything we can to prevent these needless tragedies. Red Cross in Greater New York will be hosting Sound the Alarm events at locations in Manhattan from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Please sign up to volunteer
    • June 13: The Red Cross Young Patrons provides rising stars with an opportunity to network with other socially-conscious professionals and help leverage the mission of the American Red Cross in the local community. Sign up here to join 'An Evening Under the Stars', a summer rooftop soiree to support the Red Cross, featuring an open bar, dinner, and live music. 

    Wednesday, March 13, 2019

    Red Cross Relief After Yonkers Fire


    Yesterday evening Red Cross teams rushed to the scene of a devastating fire that engulfed multiple floors in a large six-story apartment building in Yonkers. The blaze forced approximately 150 residents from their homes.

    Working in close coordination with the City of Yonkers and led by the Metro NY North Red Cross Chapter, our teams quickly opened a Reception Center at a local school (Roosevelt High School) to serve as a safe refuge for affected households. Available to the families at the Center: food, support and relief items. More than a dozen Red Cross staff were on hand, including health services and mental health volunteers, to offer comfort and care at an incredibly trying time for those impacted. Throughout the evening nearly two dozen residents came by the Reception Center which transitioned to a shelter overnight for those who needed a place to stay.

    Today, the school remains open for residents from the severely-damaged building. Throughout the day Red Cross caseworkers are meeting one-on-one with residents to access their needs and to connect families to Red Cross and community resources. As of noon, approximately 40 residents have visited the school for services today. Additionally, meals, snacks and beverages are being served, with the help from local businesses who have donated food.

    This work will continue as long as needed.

    (photos: Kevin Suttlehan, American Red Cross)







    Monday, March 11, 2019

    In Case You Missed It - Mar 11

    The Metro North Red Cross is among the many chapters across the country raising
    our red and white flag in celebration of Red Cross Month.
    Over the last 7 days, the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 142 adults and 39 children following 48 local disasters. Here are some highlights from last week and a preview of upcoming activities (see below).

    Last Week in Review

    Upcoming Events and Opportunities