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American Red Cross Grand Canyon Chapter Seeking Volunteers for Fire Safety Project

Grand Canyon - Seeking Fire Safety Volunteers

PHOENIX (Oct. 18, 2012) – The American Red Cross Grand Canyon Chapter is seeking volunteers for its “Make a Difference Day” project that’s scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 27, in which participants will travel door to door through Glendale neighborhoods, promoting fire safety and prevention.

As many as 100 volunteers – working in pairs with a driver and a navigator in their personal vehicles – will begin gathering at 8 a.m. at Grand Canyon Chapter headquarters, at 6135 N. Black Canyon Highway in Phoenix. After breakfast, Grand Canyon Chapter Chief Executive Officer Bill Epps and Councilman Daniel Valenzuela of Phoenix District 5 will address the group, then participants will review material during a brief workshop. Participants will spend about two hours canvassing assigned routes, where they’ll discuss the importance of checking smoke detectors on a monthly basis and creating evacuation plans with as many as 3,750 homeowners. They’ll also distribute fire safety and prevention checklists to help families become prepared for emergencies, along with Halloween safety tip sheets and information about the Red Cross first aid app. Teams will return to the Grand Canyon Chapter around noon to share their experiences over lunch, and a randomly selected pair will receive a free Red Cross health and safety course. To register, contact Grand Canyon Chapter Community Outreach Coordinator Natasha Holstein at 602-336-6693 or natasha.holstein@redcross.org.

It’s National Fire Prevention Month in October, and the Grand Canyon Chapter is aiming to increase awareness in the 85301 zip code of Glendale. The past four years, there have been 54 incidents requiring Red Cross response in the 85301 zip code, including 16 calls in 2011, and homeowners in the neighborhoods targeted for the “Make a Difference Day” project have requested assistance from the Red Cross 13 times over that span. An estimated 62 percent of reported home fire deaths result from fires in homes without smoke detectors, according to the National Fire Protection Association, and the organization projects functioning smoke detectors cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half.

“Our state was just 4 years old when the Arizona Red Cross stepped in and began providing emergency services to the people of Phoenix,” Valenzuela said. “Nearly 100 years later, the Grand Canyon Chapter continues to be a vital partner of the city in keeping our families and neighborhoods safe. Their work this month for the victims of the fire at Willow Springs Apartments is a shining example of the critical role they play during emergencies. As a Valley firefighter, I know that fighting the fire and saving lives while the clock is ticking is the first step. Providing basic resources like food, clothing, shelter and compassion after the event is a service to our community beyond measure.”

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. It’s a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. The Grand Canyon Chapter, established in 1916, re-chartered in 1999 and expanded in 2003, ranks as the fifth-largest chapter nationally, serving the more than 5.1 million people in Apache, Coconino, Gila, La Paz, Maricopa, Mohave, Navajo, Pinal, Yavapai and Yuma counties. For more information on the Grand Canyon Chapter, please visit www.arizonaredcross.org, like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/redcrossgcc or follow us on Twitter under the handle @RedCrossGCC.