The American Red Cross launched the Home Fire Preparedness Campaign in October, and the momentum hasn’t slowed since. As temperatures drop and home fire outbreaks continue, people are ready to help by hitting the pavement in neighborhoods across the country.
Here’s how it works:
Local Red Cross chapters bring together volunteers and community partners to go home by home, providing education and preparing homes with lifesaving equipment. They make teams, gather equipment and make plans to canvas the neighborhood.
The Red Cross Los Angeles Region recently brought together volunteers and firefighters to canvas neighborhoods in Pasadena, California, building relationships with the local community and making appointments to install free smoke detectors. On January 31, more than 100 volunteers from the Red Cross chapter and community partners met at Pasadena’s Jackie Robinson Park before heading out to install smoke detectors in more than 70 homes.
Community partners included Public Information Officer Lisa Derderian from the Pasadena Fire Department, who said at one canvassing gathering, “Smoke detectors are not a luxury, but a vital necessity.”
Red Cross and community volunteers go door-to-door to help assess a household’s needs. Family members are given critical information on home fire safety, including how to make and practice fire escape plans.
Since the campaign began in October, the Red Cross has helped develop more than 15,000 household fire escape plans.
Homes might not have smoke detectors installed, and some smoke detectors might not have working batteries. Whatever the case, teams of volunteers are stepping up and stepping on ladders to replace life-saving alarms and power them with fresh batteries.
So far, Red Cross teams and partners across the country have installed more than 34,000 smoke alarms and replaced nearly 6,000 smoke alarm batteries.
The home fire campaign is set to last five years. Why? The Red Cross aims to reduce deaths and injuries from home fires by 25 percent by the time our campaign has wrapped up. Even after the official campaign ends, our teams will still be out there, helping families like the Smiths should a home fire hit.
Since October, this campaign has provided service to more than 56,000 people. Want to get involved? You can:
To donate and learn more about #GiveWhatFireTakes, visit our Crowdrise campaign page, make a direct donation on redcross.org and share what moved you to join the campaign on social media with #GiveWhatFireTakes.