Despite a very soggy start to the day, 30 Red Cross volunteers turned out on Saturday, Nov. 7, to canvass three Gresham/Fairview neighborhoods in eastern Multnomah County as part of our ongoing Home Fire Preparedness Campaign. During the six-hour event, volunteers were trained, 304 homes were visited, 205 smoke alarms were installed and 66 home-fire escape evacuation plans were discussed, setting a new one-day record for the Cascades Region!
One area canvassed was the Wood Village Green Mobile Home Park, which has 185 residences. Jerry and Edna Keller, managers of park for 45 years, said that they’ve seen some serious fires in their neighborhood. The majority of the homes were built in the 1970s. The age of the units and the fact that they sit very close together, cause the Kellers to worry about fire safety. That’s why they were so thrilled to receive the Red Cross flyer announcing that the Red Cross would be in the area to install free smoke alarms in homes that need them. “As managers, our roles are many, but one constant is keeping a watchful eye over our neighborhood. This initiative gives Jerry and I peace of mind,” Edna said.
After the volunteer team, including sister and brother Jesse and Malachi Hindle, installed two smoke alarms in the Keller home, the Kellers asked the volunteers where they were heading next. They wanted to be sure that some of the senior residents, who aren’t as mobile as they once were, were also receiving alarms. While Jerry patrols the neighborhood every evening and spends time getting to know the residents, he is concerned about the health and safety of some of them.
When the team finished up and said their goodbyes, Jerry echoed Edna’s sentiments, “We really appreciate you doing this for the residents of the court. Your efforts are making this a safer place for all of us to live. Thank you.”
The next Home Fire Preparedness Campaign event is Saturday, Dec. 5, in Washington County. To volunteer, register online.