Thursday, August 28, 2014

Volunteering Inspires Some to Become Employees

After Superstorm Sandy, the American Red Cross relied on its dedicated staff members and volunteers to provide aid to those affected by the storm. More than 10,000 volunteers from across the country poured into the Greater New York region to help the thousands of people in need.

For some of those volunteers, assisting with the long-term recovery efforts of the Red Cross became a mission they wanted to commit to full time. Patty Jones, Tymera Jackson and Kevin Rivero are three of those individuals.

Patty Jones has been volunteering with the Red Cross since she was fifteen. She began as a Candy Striper in Methodist Hospital of Brooklyn. Post-Sandy, Jones, who lives in Brooklyn, once again signed on to volunteer for the Red Cross.

In February 2013, she joined the Sandy Long-Term Recovery Document Management department. For the next four months, she volunteered Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., researching internal and external databases to learn about residents who had reached out for assistance. Later, she transferred to the Intake Department to conduct initial interviews of Sandy-affected residents. Eventually, Jones was hired as a Greater New York case manager for the Sandy Long Term Recovery.

Jones, who also regularly volunteers on a Disaster Action Team for the Greater New York Red Cross in New York City, says her experience working with Red Cross staff and volunteers has been nothing short of inspiring.

“I’ve met a lot of wonderful volunteers from different states,” she said. “As a New Yorker, I’ll always be grateful that they left their families behind, in some cases for months, just to help us out.”

Tymera Jackson of Westchester County began volunteering with the Red Cross after Hurricane Katrina, back in 2005. At the former White Plains office, she started off doing administrative tasks in the Emergency Services department. In addition to her administrative role, Tymera helped screen potential volunteers, and joined a Disaster Action Team that responds to local emergencies, helping those affected. For three years, she gave 30 hours of her time a week as a volunteer at White Plains.

Inspired by the mission of the Red Cross, after Hurricane Sandy hit, Jackson applied to become a Sandy long term recovery case manager in the Greater New York Manhattan office. She was hired in March 2013. In this role, she visits Sandy-affected residents from Connecticut and New York City, assessing damage to their homes and helping them to access resources from Red Cross and/or other agencies.

“People have said things like, ‘You’re an angel, God must have sent you,’ she said. “They just want to know that someone cares and that someone is there to listen to their issues.”

When Superstorm Sandy hit, Kevin Rivero, from Washington, D.C., was fresh out of college. To help pay for his education, he worked for both a restaurant and an event planning company. In January 2013, after learning the Red Cross needed post-Sandy recovery volunteers, Kevin applied, was accepted, and moved to New York City. He volunteered for nearly five months providing assistance for people affected by Sandy. In June 2013, Kevin became a full-time staff member on the Long-Term Recovery team. 

Kevin said his volunteer work prepared him for his current job. Both as a volunteer and in his current job, he helps Sandy-affected residents receive financial or emotional support from Red Cross programs and through partner organizations. Kevin, who works with residents across Long Island, speaks with residents by phone and visits their homes to assess their needs.

“My job is about being a partner to those I help and steer them through the recovery process,” Kevin said. “It’s rewarding to see them making progress.”

Kevin is also in the process of becoming a volunteer disaster responder.  “What the responders do is really cool,” Kevin said. “I would like to be part of that.”

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

LI’s Sal Montoro Promoted to National Shelter Operations Manager

Sal Montoro, far right, with Long Island colleagues.
Like so many people, Long Island resident Sal Montoro started volunteering with the American Red Cross after 9/11. Montoro was working in downtown Manhattan for LeNoble Lumber Co., where he is now manager of credit and operations. LeNoble had become the supplier for all emergency service people carrying out recovery work, and Montoro was supervising deliveries of lumber being used to shore up building and power lines. 

One day he was driving a forklift and cut his hand open. “I saw a Red Cross station and went over for first aid,” he said. “The people were great, and they explained what they did. I promised myself that in the memory of my friends that I lost, I would do something good. That was almost 13 years ago, and I'm still here.”

Recently, with nearly 13 years of experience under his belt as a Disaster Action Team (DAT) captain, board member, shelter committee chairman, and Sheltering Operations Local Emergency Response (SOLER) team founder (SOLER teams set up and run shelters on Long Island), Montoro was promoted to the position of Red Cross National Shelter Operations Manager. In fact, he’s leading the way as the first National Shelter Operations Manager to come from the Greater New York region. 

“Shelter Operations Manager is a national title which allows me to supervise shelters in a large-scale disaster,” Montoro explained. “I’m proud of my promotion; it’s taken almost 10 years of work to get to this.”

To be approved as a shelter operations manager Montoro underwent a rigorous training process. It included nearly 15 required courses, multiple assignments as shelter manager, and acting Shelter Operations Manager during Irene and Sandy. “I've been working in shelters for more than 10 years,” he said. “Some were small (25 people); and some large (2,223 people).”

According to Liz Barker, Greater New York senior disaster program manager, Montoro has a passion and enthusiasm for this work that is contagious. “He sincerely wants to help people after disasters, is dedicated to the Red Cross mission, and keeps the success of other volunteers as one of his highest priorities,” she said. “I feel so lucky to have Sal on our side.”

What skill does Montoro believe is most important to a shelter manager? He cites the ability to work well with others. “Before one can be a good leader one needs to be a good follower,” he said. “I've learned throughout the years to become a good listener and a good follower.”

As a shelter worker, Montoro has experienced some particularly emotional scenes. One, he said, took place during Hurricane Katrina, in a Mississippi shelter with over 2,300 people.

“One older woman sat at the front door for days saying she was waiting for her son to come,” he said. “We treated her like she was an aunt, and she treated us with love as well. One day a young man asked for this woman. This was her son; it had taken almost two weeks of looking through all the shelters in Louisiana and Mississippi to find his mother. When he finally found her it was one of the most emotional times of my life.”

“The volunteer work I do is fulfilling,” he added. “It grounds me and reminds me every day how lucky I am. The Red Cross is a great organization. If they'll have me, I plan on staying here for life.”

Monday, August 25, 2014

In Case You Missed it – Aug. 25

Red Cross Volunteer unloading supplies for service center in the aftermath of Hamilton Heights fire.
In the last week the Red Cross provided emergency relief in the form of shelter, food, clothing, health services and/or emotional support to 178 New Yorkers impacted by 36 disasters across our region. Here are some highlights.

Last Week in Review

  • The Red Cross helped over 100 residents displaced by a tragic 4-alarm fire that tore through an apartment building on West 138th Street in Manhattan last Monday, taking one life. At a relief center set up at nearby P.S. 192 on W. 136th Street, Red Cross teams provided comfort in the form of hot meals, health services, emotional support, and other assistance to those displaced. We also provided emergency housing at local hotels to those that needed it. Get an inside look into the Red Cross Service Center setup to assist the displaced residents of the Hamilton Heights fire and meet some of the workers and volunteers responding to this disaster with the video above.
  • Donations to the Red Cross after Sandy are helping fund rebuilding efforts by community-based organizations like Resurrection Brooklyn Relief. This weekend, some great Red Cross volunteers helped Resurrection Brooklyn repair a Sandy-damaged home in Brooklyn.
  • One more Red Cross intern has weighed in with his thoughts on serving with the Red Cross. Read what Conrad Cantor has to say about interning with the Sandy Long Term Recovery team.
  • Yankee fans stepped up to the plate for the Red Cross last week, purchasing reduced-cost premium tickets to the August 20 Yankees vs. Astros game. Sadly the Yankees lost. Happily, a portion of the proceeds of the reduced-cost tickets will go to support the Red Cross humanitarian mission. Long Island Red Crossers, including CEO John Miller, came out in force to attend the game.
  • The Red Cross Middletown Warehouse has been a hive of activity since last Thursday, with a huge cleanup of blankets, bulk items and shelter trailers. Additionally, a total of 530 cots were cleaned, restocked and "palletized" and are now ready for distribution. Way to go, Red Crossers!
  • Kudos to Kelly McKinney, our Chief Disaster Officer, for representing Greater NY in the #IceBucketChallenge to #StrikeoutALS after being challenged by the NYC Office of Emergency Management. Watch Kelly get doused for a good cause!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Yankee Fans Step Up to the Plate for the Red Cross

A total of 70 people, including Red Crossers from Greater NY and even out of town, took advantage of the opportunity to purchase reduced-cost premium tickets to the August 20 Yankees vs. Astros game, with a portion of the proceeds going to support the humanitarian mission of the American Red Cross.

Additionally, the first 50 game attendees received a Red Cross t-shirt and all attendees were automatically entered into a raffle to win four complimentary tickets (valued at $1,200) to a Yankees game held before Derek Jeter's retirement. 

“We thank all those who bought tickets supporting the Red Cross mission of helping those in need,” said John Miller, CEO of the Long Island Red Cross, who attended the game. “I’m proud to say that Long Island Red Crossers were well represented at game, wearing their red, white and blue!”

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

My Internship with the Greater NY Red Cross

By Conrad Cantor

I was looking forward to this internship with the Community Recovery section within the Sandy Long Term Recovery team at the American Red Cross. I already had some experience within the emergency management field at my previous internship in Washington, DC, and wanted to learn more about the recovery aspect of the disaster cycle.

Although my colleagues smothered me with acronyms and strange-sounding terms, I quickly picked up the lingo and understood a basic conversation between my colleagues. I helped publish newsletters on post-Sandy community resources and even got certified in Adult First Aid/CPR/AED. Sitting in on a few meetings with FEMA and volunteer organization officials made me realize how lengthy the recovery process is, especially with a natural disaster such as Hurricane Sandy.

Perhaps my biggest project at the Red Cross was the transition docs, a series of reports on the five boroughs, Long Island, and Metro New York North. For each of these reports, I helped compile Sandy damage metrics, neighborhood demographics, and general background information on Sandy-affected areas. It helped me further understand the toll Sandy took on New Yorkers’ lives.

I am glad that I was exposed to the nonprofit section of emergency management and disaster relief. It was a humbling experience and I received the opportunity to work with some of the most dedicated and mission-oriented people in this field. I will definitely contribute my time and talents to any future volunteer opportunities with the Red Cross. I am proud to carry this experience forward and I look forward to a lifelong career in the emergency management and public health fields.

Conrad is
pursuing an MA in public administration at Baruch College's School of Public Affairs. He holds a BA in political science from Pace University.

Monday, August 18, 2014

In Case You Missed it – Aug. 18

Photo: Ronnie Rigos / @rgrigos
In the last week the Red Cross provided emergency relief in the form of shelter, food, clothing, health services and/or emotional support to 128 New Yorkers impacted by 50 disasters across our region. These numbers do not include the hundreds of people helped after last week’s Long Island floods. Here are some highlights from the prior week.

Last Week in Review

  • Last week, record-setting rainfall inundated communities on Long Island and Red Cross volunteers sprang into action to help hundreds of people affected by the severe flooding. Red Cross teams from across the region—Long Island, New York City, and Metro New York North—distributed flood clean-up supplies, blankets and beverages, conducted damage assessment and worked with families to determine whether further emergency assistance was needed. Read about the response in more detail here.
  • August 14 was the anniversary of the Northeast Blackout. Editorial Manager Anita Salzberg commemorated the occasion by asking "Where Were You During the Blackout of 2003?"
  • With help from the American Red Cross, volunteers from Southern Baptist Disaster Relief and other organizations are working to rebuild Long Island homes damaged by Superstorm Sandy, and are making their own temporary home on a Long Island college campus as they do the work.
  • Wonderful story of how a Yonkers police captain used infant CPR to save the life of a baby and will now attend her wedding 20 years later. CPR can not only save a life, but it can also build life-long relationships. See video report from NBC NY here.
  • Several interns finished their summer internships with us and shared what their experience was like here, here and here. Thank you for all your hard work ladies!
  • Sadly, last week two prominent celebrities passed away: Robin Williams and Lauren Bacall. Many may not know that Lauren Bacall began her modeling career in 1943 with this iconic Harper's Bazaar cover to ramp up blood donations to support US military hospitals overseas during WWII.

    Thursday, August 14, 2014

    Where Were You During Blackout 2003?

    By Agatha Kereere

    Anita Salzberg, American Red Cross Greater NY editorial manager, was home with her husband in their Queens, N.Y., apartment on Thursday, August 14, 2003, when a major outage knocked out power to millions in the northeast U.S. and Canada.

    "It was late-afternoon and sunny," Salzberg said. "The air conditioner abruptly cut off and our clocks stopped working. This was about two years after 9/11 so my first thought was—'Terrorism?' I got one of our small transistor radios out of a cabinet, and, within a minute, I knew this was 'just' a blackout."

    Salzberg proceeded to collect all the batteries and flashlights in the apartment and dumped them onto the couple's dining room table. She said her husband looked at her with a combination of surprise and amusement. "He didn't know we had these supplies or how I'd thought of them," she said. "And I didn't think it was funny."

    Though Salzberg and others felt a sense of relief when the source of the blackout was revealed to have no links to terrorism, that didn't make the situation any less serious. According to news reports, roughly 50 million people were affected by the loss of power.

    Technology and social media had yet to make the strides of today; there was no Facebook status to assure loved ones of a person's wellbeing or tweets to provide updates on the situation. Many people weren't sure how to respond to the outage, but perhaps some, like Salzberg, were able to rely on past experiences to dictate how to proceed.

    "I remembered the blackout back in 1977 and used that to help me in this situation," Salzberg said. "Having the supplies on hand was instinctive; I just knew what we'd need if the power went down."

    Blackout 2003 was 11 years ago today. However, more than a decade later, many New Yorkers still aren't prepared for this kind of emergency. Are you?

    Learn Red Cross tips for successfully coping with a power outage.

    Tuesday, August 12, 2014

    Creating Community: What I learned during my time at the Red Cross

    By Caroline Hroncich 

    On a hot Monday in August I found myself standing on a street in the Bronx wearing a bright yellow and red reflective vest with two American Red Cross Disaster Action Team (DAT) volunteers. They were assisting a woman who had lost her apartment of 15 years in a fire. She had just returned from the hospital, and, for someone who had just lost her home, she was surprisingly calm.

    While I and the other DAT members were speaking with her, a young boy passed by, dribbling a basketball. “I’m glad you’re okay!” he yelled as he waved in our direction. The woman smiled and waved backed. I thought at that moment that this experience, although small, wholly summed up my time interning with the Red Cross. 

    Before this summer, other than donating at the occasional blood drive, I had not interacted with the Red Cross. I was somewhat familiar with disaster relief, but had never quite taken that step to volunteer. So when I received an internship offer from the Communications Department of the Greater New York Red Cross Region, I eagerly accepted. What I learned about their work was much greater than I could have expected.

    Interning with Communications, part of my job was to speak to with families who were helped by Red Cross volunteers in order to write their stories. I quickly learned that it doesn’t get easier listening to people tell the story of what may very well be the one of the worst days of their lives. Although all of these people came from different backgrounds and had suffered disasters ranging from fires to floods.

    I realized they all had one thing in common: hope. There was a certain smile that appeared on someone’s face when he or she talked about that one special Red Cross caseworker or volunteer who had helped them through their difficult time.

    The Red Cross creates a community for those who have experienced disasters; it creates a place where they can turn for reassurance that their hard time will end. It provides them with resources to help them effectively recover, and a case worker to help ensure that they do.  

    So as I stood on that corner, watching this woman surrounded by her children and neighbors, I realized that community is what helps people truly recover from disasters. It’s the love and kindness of the people around you. By providing people with a place to turn, the Red Cross creates a community of resources and support, while simultaneously helping people preserve their own communities.

    I was happy that this woman and her children would have a place to stay only a few blocks away from her neighborhood, so she could return and see the people she cared about the most. As the Red Cross van pulled away from the Bronx building, I was satisfied to know that we’d helped make her life just a little bit easier. Sometimes all you need is a simple “glad you’re okay!” to help you through the day; but for those times when you need a little bit more, it’s reassuring to know that the Red Cross is there to help.

    Monday, August 11, 2014


    In the last week the Red Cross provided emergency relief in the form of shelter, food, clothing, health services and/or emotional support to 279 New Yorkers impacted by 46 disasters in our region. Here are some highlights from the last week.


    • Over the weekend, Red Cross volunteers helped 35 people after a three-alarm fire on Saratoga Avenue in Yonkers broke out late Saturday evening. In coordination with Yonkers OEM, a shelter was set up at the Peter Chema Community Center. Volunteers worked all night to make sure all affected had support and a safe place to sleep. See pictures

    • On August 9, a number of Red Cross volunteers spent Saturday on Staten Island participating in a Superstorm Sandy rebuild. The rebuild took place with our partner, Tunnel to Towers, that received a Red Cross grant to rebuild homes damaged by Sandy. See photos.
    • Red Cross volunteers from Metro New York North partnered with members of our FDNY Disaster Assistance Response Team for an ERV (Emergency Response Vehicle) Road Test on Aug. 9.
    • The Visiting Nurse Service of New York will be hosting four Disaster Distress Response Programs in the Greater New York area this August. The programs are funded by the American Red Cross, Read our web story to find out more about the upcoming programs.
    • On Aug. 4, the Red Cross assisted residents displaced by a vacate on Kings Highway in Brooklyn. Red Cross registered 28 families for possible assistance, and provided emergency housing to three adults. 
    • Over 100 people attended the Train the Trainer preparedness workshop on August 6. The event was part of the Governor's Preparedness initiative to train 20,000 New Yorkers by March, 2015. See photos.

    Friday, August 8, 2014

    My Experience as a Red Cross Summer Intern

    by Emily Seyle

    Having a passion for human rights, I was drawn to the idea of an internship with the Youth Services department at the American Red Cross Greater NY Region. As a senior pursuing a dual degree in economics and human rights at UConn, I have been learning about the amazing work of the American Red Cross for as long as I can remember.

    Despite my relevant coursework however, I was truly naïve about the level of commitment by both staff and volunteers. Within minutes of walking through the door on my first day, it immediately became clear that the love for the work of the Red Cross runs deep throughout the region and organization as a whole.

    Many of my responsibilities consisted of developing methods to engage students throughout the region as they are an integral part of present and future Red Cross efforts. I am lucky to have had the opportunity to work with student volunteers; it helped me understand the strength of the Red Cross. The accomplishments of these students is incredible. I felt inspired that the Red Cross works to not only inspire but to also empower its volunteers of all ages. A student once told me that volunteering for the Red Cross created opportunities they had never thought possible. As I write this post on my last day as a Youth Services Intern, I believe this same statement to be true for me as well.

    The greatest impact this internship had on me was a result of my amazing supervisors, Amanda Crabbe and Trent Shafer. Amanda and Trent trusted me to take on projects and make them my own. I loved that I was constantly challenged to explore new avenues for completing tasks that served to mature my skillsets. Being able to contribute and develop my ideas without fear of rejection was the most important part of my internship because it allowed me to gain real work experience.

    I am extremely fortunate to be able to say that my time as Communications and Social Media Intern for Youth Services is by far the best work experience I’ve ever had. As I go on to complete my final semester (and thus begin the daunting search for a career), I know that my internship with the American Red Cross provided me not only with invaluable skills and work experience but also a new place to call home. 

    Thursday, August 7, 2014

    My Red Cross Internship

    by Alice Ding

    When I started my internship this summer in the Communications Department at the American Red Cross Greater New York Region, I had limited knowledge of the organization. On my first day, my supervisors gave me a brief tour of the office building and an overview of the mission of the Red Cross.

    This was the first time I became aware that the organization is involved with blood drives as well as disaster relief efforts. Through my day-to-day tasks, mini-projects and a ride-along experience to a disaster response, I learned what it takes to be a Red Crosser.

    I worked as a social media/editorial intern. Part of my job as an editorial intern was to interview volunteers and staff members to learn their Red Cross roles and experiences. One recurring theme during my conversations was genuineness. Everyone I interviewed said Red Crossers sincerely care about those in need. 

    This was also my experience on a ride-along with Gerald Rothstein, a Red Cross volunteer disaster responder. Gerald was patient with a couple affected by a house fire, explaining how the Red Cross was able to assist them and answering all their questions. 

    Even though they don’t go into the field as often as the responders, everyone in my department also cares about the community. My supervisors are constantly coming up with creative content to engage the public and inform them to be prepared in times of disaster. Part of my job is to monitor and update social media to help the community stay informed of disasters happening in the Greater NY region and the resources they can access.

    As my internship progressed, I became proud to contribute to an organization that strives to help the community and places the well-being of people before anything else. I’m glad I was able to spend my summer around a group of selfless individuals. The most rewarding part for me was being able to speak to inspiring Red Crossers and help to spread their experiences to the community.

    Going back and finishing my last semester at NYU as a communications major, I hope to continue stay involved with the Red Cross and help out when I can.

    Wednesday, August 6, 2014

    Red Cross Help for Bronx Family

    Yvette Carvajal and her Red Cross casworker, Lilliam Rivera-Cruz

    by Caroline Hroncich

    A relaxing day at the beach quickly took a turn for the worse for the Carvajal family. Forty-three year-old Yvette Carvajal had taken her two children, Jasmine, 10, and David, 15, to the beach on July 19, in celebration of Jasmine’s birthday, when she received a frantic phone call from a neighbor: Their Bronx apartment was on fire. Fortunately, the American Red Cross was there to provide assistance.   

    When they got back to their Garfield Street home of seven years, Carvajal was shocked at the scene unfolding before her. The fire department was almost finished putting out the fire, and there was hardly anything left to recover.

    “There was broken glass everywhere,” she said, “When I went to the back and saw the destruction in my room and my son’s room; that got me bad.” 

    Carvajal said she felt lost, unsure of what she was going to do, and where she was going to stay. Then two Red Cross volunteers approached her.

    “They comforted me,” Carvajal said. “They asked if I had a place to go. I told them I was going to stay in my car. The man said ‘We will get you a place to stay.’”

    The Red Cross provided the Carvajal family with temporary housing close to their neighborhood. They also received emergency funds for new clothing, since they now had only their beach wear.

    “I left my home fine,” Carvajal said, “and came back and find it was gone. My apartment was where we felt comfortable. That was my home.”

    There is no doubt Yvette Carvajal’s strength allowed her to stay positive throughout this experience. Carvajal said her Red Cross caseworker, Lillian Rivera-Cruz, helped her to get access to the resources she and her two children need to move forward.

    “Right now the Red Cross has given me hope, and is guiding me to the path I’m supposed to be on to start over,” she said. “I feel very thankful."

    Monday, August 4, 2014

    In Case You Missed It

    In the last week the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency relief in the form of shelter, food, clothing, health services and/or emotional support to 104 New Yorkers impacted by 44 local disasters in our region. Here is a upcoming Yankees event and some highlights from the last week.
    Upcoming Event
    Last Week in Review
    • Our Metro New York North logistics team met on Saturday to develop future disaster team leaders. The program included disaster training and simulations to prepare logistics team members to provide high-quality assistance in times of emergency. See photos at the Metro NY North Facebook page.
    • On August 1, regional staff members enjoyed a relaxing afternoon at the all-staff BBQ with some delicious burgers prepared by the Greater New York management team. (Photo above)
    • The Red Cross assisted residents affected by a 4-alarm fire on Hill Ave in the Bronx on Wednesday. We provided temporary housing to 14 adults and 3 children in addition to financial and emotional support. The Red Cross case managers provided further assistance to those in need.
    • Nearly 40 Red Crossers attended the Metro NY North quarterly regional meeting on Tuesday, hearing updates about Red Cross programs and services from the MNYN and Greater NY teams. 
    • Greater NY CEO Josh Lockwood talked about water safety with the Wall Street Journal. Check out the video, below to see the five essential skills you need to stay safe in the water. 

    Friday, August 1, 2014

    ICP Welcomes New Volunteers

    By Nina Raffio

    Recently, the Greater New York Red Cross held an orientation for new Individual and Community Preparedness (ICP) Department volunteers. The volunteers heard an overview of ICP's role at the Red Cross and learned about Red Cross outreach programs and opportunities.

    The orientation also included interactive mock-presentations and skits. Volunteers paired up and practiced the "Be Red Cross Ready" preparedness presentation, doing "teach-backs" to familiarize themselves with the material. They also learned how to staff tabling events by acting out different scenarios/skits. Some volunteers performed their skits in Spanish, which brought a new dynamic to the group.

    The ICP department is excited to work with its new volunteers. It thanks them for attending the orientation and for bringing great energy to the event. Volunteers comprise 95 percent of the Red Cross workforce, and their importance cannot be emphasized enough.

    "ICP, as well as Red Cross as a whole, thanks these volunteers for taking the time to interview and attend orientation," said Shawn Walton, an ICP staff member who also attended Thursday's event, "We thank them for continuing to help carry out the department's mission and organization's goal to alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies, both in New York and nationally."

    Red Cross volunteers practice a Be Red Cross Ready presentation in a teach-back exercise.

    Volunteers learn how to staff tabling events by taking turns and performing skits.