Give Something that Means Something and Double Your Holiday Donation

Alabama Tornadoes 2011This holiday season the American Red Cross is urging people to give something that means something by making a financial donation through the 2013 Holiday Donor Challenge campaign. You can give hope to local families in need and DOUBLE the impact of your contribution through a matching gift incentive.

Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor, the first $20,000 in financial contributions to the Cape Fear Chapter of the American Red Cross will be matched this holiday season. Every donation will be matched dollar for dollar in  support of the vital programs and services provided to area residents by the Red Cross. Your donation can help save the day when fire destroys a neighbor’s house, when a patient needs blood, or when a member of the military has a family emergency back home.

rco_blog_img_tornado“We ask people to be generous in their support of the Red Cross this holiday season, and help us to provide assistance and relief to local neighbors in need,” said Vicki LaBelle, Executive Director for the Cape Fear Chapter of the American Red Cross. “We know these are difficult times for families and businesses across our nation.  That’s why we’re grateful for the ability to offer supporters this opportunity to double the impact of their holiday donation through this incredible matching gift incentive.”

Your tax-deductible contribution can be made by:

  • Mail or In Person: American Red Cross, Cape Fear Chapter 1102 South 16th St., Wilmington NC 28401
    Office Hours: M-F 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Phone: 910.343-5833
  • Online: www.redcross.org/capefear

Two thousand and thirteen has been a busy year for the American Red Cross. Red Cross chapters responded to more nearly 70,000 disasters across the country, including major relief operations for wildfires that burned hundreds of thousands of acres; tornadoes that destroyed entire towns; and flooding that left communities under water.

Over the past year, our local Cape Fear Chapter has provided the following vital programs and services in fulfillment of the Red Cross mission:

  • Responded to 146 local disasters (primarily home fires) and provided more than $94,000 in direct assistance and relief to 161 families (508 individuals) including 194 children (age 17 and under).
  • Disseminated Community Disaster Education information and materials to 17,185 area residents at 70 community events throughout our five-county jurisdiction.
  • Made 1,325 client referrals to other community agencies and resources.
  • Supported 495 area blood drives through which 16,368 units of blood were collected and distributed to area hospitals to meet the needs of local patients; each unit of blood has to the potential to help up to 3 patients.
  • Facilitated emergency communications and other assistance for 536 military members and their families.
  • Provided “Get To Know Us” information to 246 military members and their families and delivered more than 2,500 holiday cards and cookies to active duty and veteran service members and their families across our five counties.
  • Trained 2,878 area residents in first aid, CPR, babysitter’s training, water safety and other lifesaving skills through certification courses taught by local Red Cross instructors.
  • Reached 301,099 community members through electronic and interactive health and safety
    course materials and other preparedness information accessed through redcross.org, Red Cross
    social media sites, and via free Red Cross apps that can be downloaded for Android and Apple
    devices.
  • Assisted with 3 international tracing cases and one international information and referral request.
  • And, mobilized volunteer resources and financial support from our community to aid in relief efforts across the country in the aftermath of disasters such as Hurricane Irene, Superstorm Sandy, The Oklahoma Tornadoes, and the Western wildfires and floods to name a few.

All of this was made possible through the dedicated service of nearly 450 volunteers, a handful of paid staff members, and the generous support of nearly 2,000 local financial donors, and thousands of area blood donors.

The work of the American Red Cross impacts lives every day, and it is only through the continued generosity of our donors, partners, and volunteers that this is possible.

How Eastern NC Supported the Superstorm Sandy Response

Chris Nienow of Wilmington, NC (right) and Kerry Karusse (Emergency Communication Coordinator with ARES) worked to set up satelitte communications in Elizabeth City, NC during Superstorm Sandy.

Chris Nienow of Wilmington, NC (right) and Kerry Karusse (Emergency Communication Coordinator with ARES) worked to set up satellite communications in Elizabeth City, NC during Superstorm Sandy.

Click Here for the National One-year Superstorm Sandy report.

The Eastern NC Region of the American Red Cross supported Superstorm Sandy preparation and response here at home and throughout the northeast.  Before the storm hit, the Red Cross set up command centers staffed with local Red Cross workers in New Bern and Elizabeth City.

Four emergency shelters were opened which housed 82 residents whose homes were threatened by storm surge flooding.   In eastern NC, 71 local Red Cross workers sheltered, fed and distributed supplies to communities along our coast affected by Sandy.  A total of 1,900 meals and snacks were served to local residents in the storms wake along with 45 comfort kits containing hygiene items and 561 clean up kits.

After our communities’ needs were met, the local Red Cross shifted volunteers and resources to areas hit the hardest by Sandy including Virginia, New York and New Jersey. A total of 112 individuals from the American Red Cross Eastern NC Region deployed to assist with the Superstorm Sandy response.

Volunteer Charlotte Rodriguez of Jacksonville, NC (right) helps a group of young men get food and information about Red Cross assistance as they work to clean up storm ravaged homes in Breezy Point, NY.

Volunteer Charlotte Rodriguez of Jacksonville, NC (right) helps a group of young men get food and information about Red Cross assistance as they work to clean up storm ravaged homes in Breezy Point, NY.

Some of those workers took on multiple assignments going back for weeks at a time to help out in the northeast. These volunteers were involved with essential activities including shelter operations, feeding, client casework, distribution of supplies, damage assessment, and health and mental health services.

Five emergency vehicles from Red Cross chapters in Elizabeth City, Goldsboro, New Bern, Rocky Mount and Wilmington were driven to the northeast by teams of Red Cross volunteers to help with mobile feeding and bulk distribution of relief supplies.  These local chapter vehicles were utilized by the response operation for approximately 5 months.

The local community was an essential part of the Sandy recovery and response.  Approximately $750,000 in donations came from people here in eastern NC.  Those donations were put to good use in the communities most impacted by the storm.

Eight year old Rileigh Pedersen of Wilmington, NC sold cookies in her neighborhood to help victims of Superstorm Sandy and brought in a $208 check to the local Red Cross.

Eight year old Rileigh Pedersen of Wilmington, NC sold cookies in her neighborhood to help victims of Superstorm Sandy and brought in a $208 check to the local Red Cross.

As Sandy was making its way across the east coast, the Red Cross received a call to assist the survivors of the HMS Bounty. On Monday, October 29th, 2012, amidst treacherous waves and storm surge caused by Superstorm Sandy, the U.S. Coast Guard rescued 14 people from the HMS Bounty, a 180 ft. sailing ship that sank off the coast of Hatteras, NC. Representatives from the Eastern NC Region of the American Red Cross, in collaboration with the U.S. Coast Guard, met with the 14 survivors to offer comfort and support after the rescue. Red Cross disaster workers provided the individuals with food, clothing, and shelter, and assisted with additional immediate needs to aid them in their recovery.

On April 11, 2013 at Elizabeth City State University, the American Red Cross honored the heroism, courage and selflessness of the HMS Bounty rescue mission by paying tribute to the men and women of the Coast Guard Air Station in Elizabeth City.  At the event, the Red Cross presented awards to 22 members of the Coast Guard who risked their safety to save 14 people during a hurricane.

Members of the Coast Guard in Elizabeth City, NC receive awards from the Red Cross for the HMS Bounty Rescue during Superstorm Sandy.

Members of the Coast Guard in Elizabeth City, NC receive awards from the Red Cross for the HMS Bounty Rescue during Superstorm Sandy.

In the midst of responding to Sandy, your Red Cross of Eastern NC was also preparing for and responding to disasters at home—we provide food and shelter, distribute supplies and provide other types of support to the victims of nearly 800 local disasters a year.

We are grateful for contributions from everyone in our community who saw the devastation caused by Sandy and were determined to ease the suffering.