Red Cross, military longtime friends

| April 2, 2010 | 0 Comments

Col. Deborah B. Grays
Army News Service

ATLANTA — The American Red Cross has helped service members and their families since the 1800s.
The American people are confident and rely on the fact that the Red Cross will be on hand to lend support when a major disaster occurs, but it’s also there to help individual service members and their families in times of need.

Clara Barton, the ARC founder, risked her life on Civil War battlefields to tend to fallen Soldiers.

The Red Cross has helped servicemembers and their families since the 1800s. (Courtesy Photo)Since then, the ARC has continued helping service members and their families through every military conflict, humanitarian effort and peacekeeping operation, and follows that commitment to the military by serving members of the armed forces, even after their military tours have ended.

Each year the president of the United States proclaims March to be Red Cross Month because it is important to celebrate an organization that focuses on a wide range of services to our military community, specifically when service members need help the most.

Each year the ARC delivers more than 1.4 million emergency messages to military installations and family residences around the world. It also reaches out to more than 1.2 million members of the National Guard and Reserves and their families living in nearly every community in America.

Messages range from the joyful news of a new birth to the heartbreaking news of a family illness or death.

Red Cross emergency messages provide military personnel and their commanders fast, reliable information to help them make decisions regarding emergency leave, deferment, compassionate reassignment and dependency discharge.

Red Cross personnel form a global network with chapters in civilian communities, military installations worldwide and forward-deployed locations in Kuwait, Afghanistan and Iraq.

Red Cross workers brief departing service members and their families on available support services and explain how the Red Cross can assist them during their deployment.

Armed Forces Emergency Services partners with ARC to help service members and military families cope with separation by providing comfort and counseling.

Red Cross Armed Forces Emergency Services workers are neutral personnel to whom military persons or family members can go for confidential problem solving.

Through the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs’s Volunteer Services, Red Cross volunteers provide a number of support services to patients in VA hospitals. The Red Cross also provides assistance and information to veterans about benefits through the VA.

Red Cross services include financial assistance when an urgent personal or family crisis arises. Financial assistance is provided when there is a demonstrated need for funds, for such things as emergency travel, burial assistance or urgent health and welfare needs, like food and shelter.

Red Cross workers also work with Army Emergency Relief and other military aid societies to ensure legitimate needs are met.

The ARC provides independent verification of emergency situations and financial assistance and referrals for emergency travel and other needs.

Schofield Barracks Red Cross office temporarily closes
The local service center is currently transitioning personnel.

In an effort to minimize any long-term office closure, the Hawaii State Chapter is working to replace and train new staff as quickly as possible.

For emergency communication support to send or receive a Red Cross message, call 1-877-272-7337, and a caseworker will assist 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

To request support for pre-deployment, rear detachment or family readiness group briefings or presentations, or to register for the next CPR, first aid or “Coping with Deployments” course, call the Marine Corps Base Hawaii Kaneohe Service Center at 257-8848.

Category: Army Community Covenant, Army News Service, Community

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