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National Volunteer Week Profile - Shoba Brown

You see a smile on their faces and you give them a chance to talk. It's almost instant gratification.

One fact is well-known around the American Red Cross Kansas City Chapter: You cannot contain Shoba Brown's spirit of helping others. Brown is a faithful volunteer who says that conversations with people provide her the greatest satisfaction.

Brown’s unique approach comes from her big picture view of helping everyone involved in a difficult situation. For example, during Hurricane Sandy she made every effort to be kind to not only those personally affected, but also others helping the recovery effort. Brown focused on utility workers, who are often hard pressed for a friendly face when electricity or water is out. This is one of many instances that fit Brown’s regular philosophy on what it means to give during a time of need. She regularly provides an outlet for those who are going through a difficult ordeal and who just need a shoulder to lean on.

"People are suffering and here you show up with basic comforts, like a smile and food," Brown said. "You see a smile on their faces and you give them a chance to talk. It's almost instant gratification."

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. 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 or, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.