So clearly, I’m not Jimmy. Jimmy is off seeking greener pastures — and by that I mean baseball fields. He’s following Little Jimmy and the rest of the LHU baseball team south for the start of their baseball season. He’ll probably be back next week, unless he decides to just ride out the summer with the team. Since Jimmy appreciates all the hard work the Red Cross does, he was more than willing to let me take his space so I can tell you about all the hard work the Red Cross does.
Every eight minutes the Red Cross helps someone in need. Whether it is someone in need of blood, or help after a fire or natural disaster, or a family needing to get in touch with a deployed soldier.
The American Red Cross is part of the world's largest volunteer network found in 187 countries. With the amount of work the Red Cross does globally it can often be mistaken for a government organization, however, that is not the case. They depend on volunteers and through your generosity are able to spend 91¢ out of every dollar donated on humanitarian services and programs. 10 million people learn emergency skills such as CPR through the Red Cross every year.
According to redcross.org, “The history of the American Red Cross is inseparable from the history of America itself. Since 1881, American Red Cross members and volunteers have been an essential part of our nation’s response to war, natural disaster and other human suffering. We’ve been witness to great tragedy, but more importantly we’ve seen the triumph of the human spirit as people work together to help each other rebuild their lives and communities.”
When the U.S. entered WWI, the Red Cross was still in development and finding its paths and programs. That did not deter them from joining the war effort.
Shortly after the war began, the American Red Cross dispatched a ship to Europe loaded with medical personnel and supplies. Named the S.S. Red Cross, it was better known as ‘The Mercy Ship.’ It carried 170 surgeons and nurses who were being sent to Europe to provide medical relief to combat casualties on both sides of the war.
By the time WWI ended, the Red Cross had established itself as a tour de force organization. It developed strong leadership, a vast membership number, universal recognition, and a broad and distinguished record of service.
The American Red Cross entered WWII even before the U.S. In 1939 they began helping civilian victims with relief supplies.
In February of 1941 the Red Cross responded to a request by the U.S. government to begin a Blood Donor Service to produce lifesaving plasma for the armed forces in anticipation of America’s entry into the war.
After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Red Cross quickly mobilized a volunteer and staff force to fulfill the mandates of its 1905 congressional charter requiring that the organization to, “furnish volunteer aid to the sick and wounded of armies in time of war,” and to, “act in matters of voluntary relief and in accord with the military and naval authorities as a medium of communication between the people of the United States of America and their Army and Navy.”
The Red Cross also responded during the Korean War. At the peak of wartime activity in 1952, on a monthly average, 10,000 workers were assigned to military installations at home and abroad, over 54,000 volunteers were involved in the blood collection program, more than 25,000 volunteers worked in military hospitals, another 28,000 in Veterans Administration hospitals, and 9,000 participated in the Home Service. Two American Red Cross male workers lost their lives in service to the military during the Korean War.
This is just a small piece of the history of the Red Cross. They offer so many programs, classes and services to people across the globe.
Be sure to help them so they can help others. Volunteer. Donate money. Donate blood. Take one of their many online and in room classes—CPR, baby-sitting, water safety, and so much more.
I request that during that month (March) our people rededicate themselves to the splendid aims and activities of the Red Cross. ~President Franklin D. Roosevelt, first Presidential Proclamation of March as Red Cross Month, 1943