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Summer Safety in the Bronx with the Red Cross

Summer Safety in the Bronx

7-year old Bronx resident and emergency preparedness pro Ilene Fuller.

"If a disaster happens, I’ll have my kit ready with everything I need."

Earlier this week, the American Red Cross and the New York City Fire Department teamed up to provide emergency preparedness training to nearly 200 kids at the Boys and Girls Club day camp at PS 138 in the Bronx.

As part of the Pillowcase Project, a preparedness education program taught by Red Cross volunteers and sponsored by Disney, the students broke up into small groups to learn about personal and family preparedness, local hazards, and basic coping skills in the event of a disaster. The kids also received a pillowcase upon completion of the program in which they were encouraged to build their own personal emergency supplies kit.

“If a disaster happens, I’ll have my kit ready with everything I need,” said 12-year old Bronx resident Isaiah Simmons after the hour-long class. Speaking about what he’ll keep in his pillowcase, Simmons specified, “clothes, a blanket, water, a pen and paper, a charger, a first aid kit, soap, a tooth brush and tooth paste.”

The kids also had the opportunity to learn lifesaving safety tips from the FDNY Fire Education Unit. After hearing about fire hazards and risks, the students practiced how to escape a burning building by crawling through a simulated "smoke house" built on a 35-foot FDNY travel trailer parked in front of the school.

Following the simulation, seven-year old Ilene Fuller was eager to share what she learned. “If there is a fire and smoke, you get down and put your left hand on the wall and your right hand on the floor and you keep crawling until you find an exit.”

To learn more about the Red Cross Pillowcase Project program, click here.

For more photos from the event, click here.