Corporate Partners Help American Red Cross Prepare for Hurricane Season

Hurricane Preparedness

Contact: Public Affairs Desk - FOR MEDIA ONLY - Phone: (202) 303-5551

WASHINGTON, Friday, June 01, 2012 — The Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1, and the American Red Cross is preparing to respond to hurricanes and other disasters with the help of more than 30 leading corporations that are members of the organization’s Annual Disaster Giving Program (ADGP) and Disaster Responder (DR) program.

Members of these programs pledge donations on an ongoing basis, in advance of major disasters. These companies understand that proper supplies and systems have to be in place to respond effectively. With pre-positioned supplies and adequately secured resources, the Red Cross can immediately take action when disasters, such as hurricanes, strike.

“The Red Cross is encouraging residents in coastal areas to put plans in place now before a hurricane hits, and the Red Cross is getting ready too, thanks to the financial support of our partners and supporters in these programs,” said Gail McGovern, president and CEO of the American Red Cross.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has predicted a near-normal 2012 hurricane season saying there is a 70 percent chance we will have nine to 15 named storms—four to eight of those will become hurricanes and one to three will be major hurricanes—during the June 1 through November 30 period. Although NOAA expects we may see less activity compared with recent years, their experts agree the threat is serious and join the Red Cross in encouraging anyone living or vacationing in hurricane-prone locations to be prepared.

During a domestic disaster, the Red Cross sends volunteers and supplies into affected areas to shelter, feed and provide emotional support to disaster victims and emergency personnel. Generous gifts from ADGP and DR members – made in advance of a specific hurricane or disaster – offset a range of expenses, including warehousing supplies, shelter and feeding costs, deploying the fleet of disaster response vehicles and reconnecting individuals separated during disasters.

Working with partners around the globe, the American Red Cross also helps to build the local capacities of sister Red Cross and Red Crescent societies, by collaborating to train and organize volunteers and educate communities, and establish partnerships with other public and private organizations to strengthen and complement core international services and initiatives.

The 2012 members of the Red Cross Annual Disaster Giving Program are: 3M; Altria Group; Aon; Bank of America; Briggs & Stratton Corporation; Caterpillar Inc.; Cisco Foundation; Citi Foundation; ConAgra Foods Foundation; Costco Wholesale Corporation; Darden Restaurants, Inc.; Dell Inc.; Dr Pepper Snapple Group; FedEx Corporation; GE Foundation; Hewlett-Packard Company Foundation; The Home Depot Foundation; John Deere Foundation; Johnson Controls; Kimberly-Clark Corporation; Kraft Foods; Lowe's Companies, Inc.; Merck Co. Foundation; Morgan Stanley; Nationwide Insurance Foundation; Northrop Grumman; Optum; PepsiCo and the PepsiCo Foundation; Ryder Charitable Foundation; Southwest Airlines; State Farm; Target; The TJX Companies, Inc.; UnitedHealthcare; UPS; Walmart; The Walt Disney Company; WellPoint Foundation and Wells Fargo.

The 2012 members of the Red Cross Disaster Responder Program are: American Express; ArcelorMittal; AstraZeneca; AXA Foundation; Ford Motor Company; General Motors Foundation; H&R Block; Ingersoll Rand; PuroClean; Starbucks Coffee Company and Starbucks Foundation; State Street Foundation; Tyson Foods, Inc. and US Airways.

Individuals can join with these leading corporations to support the work of the Red Cross to help provide aid, emotional support and other assistance to the victims of thousands of domestic and international disasters each year by donating at redcross.org, texting REDCROSS to 90999 or calling 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies more than 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.