The Canadian Red Cross and COVID-19

When a pandemic like COVID-19 hits, other disasters do not stop and wait for a more convenient time.  Is help still available when the world has stopped in many ways?  The answer is ABSOLUTELY!

The Canadian Red Cross is still actively responding and helping those affected by both personal and natural disasters, but in a different way.  For example, a volunteer in Lethbridge can now respond virtually – by phone and online – to assist those impacted by the floods in Fort McMurray, or help someone who has suffered a personal disaster like a house fire.  A virtual response helps ensure the safety of volunteers, staff, and beneficiaries, while also making sure people’s basic needs are met.  The pandemic has not stopped the Red Cross.  It has just altered the way the Red Cross fulfills its mission which is “to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity in Canada and around the world.”

Photos of ‘Red Crosser’ working remotely

As a volunteer myself, I can verify that the Red Cross is following all health protocols.  I was able to respond to a personal disaster in my area, primarily over the phone, and help the beneficiary access the help they needed.  The Red Cross also continues to support, engage, and offer training to volunteers by using online platforms.

The Canadian Red Cross is still helping support communities.

This includes during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Fort McMurray and area floods, and the Nova Scotia shootings.  Besides actively responding to emergencies and disasters, the Red Cross is involved in other ways across Canada.  For example, the “Ready When the Time Comes program” trains employers and their staff as Red Cross volunteers who can promote emergency preparedness and increase response capacity in their own communities.

 

Red Cross Volunteers

The Red Cross is actively recruiting volunteers.  It relies on volunteers to bring their different skills and abilities to the organization to increase their ability to respond.  This could include actively helping during emergencies or disasters, sitting on committees and project teams, providing customer service and office support or a variety of other things.  The Red Cross is always looking for Canadians who are willing and interested in making a difference in their community.  If volunteering is not something that is an option for you right now, another way to make a difference is to donate to the organization.

For more information go to the Canadian Red Cross website at https://www.redcross.ca

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