Members of the Armed Forces and their families encounter stress not always experienced in civilian life - lengthy separations from family, lack of familiar support resources and ineligibility for local benefits.
The U.S. Congress mandates that the American Red Cross provide social welfare services to our service members and their family members. We work to accomplish this mission, easing stress unique to the families of service members and serving the entire community in several ways.
The American Red Cross provides assistance and information to veterans about the Department of Veterans Affairs. Red Cross workers assist veterans in the preparation, development and effort to obtain evidence to support a claim for financial benefits through the Board of Veterans Appeals.
Also, through the Veterans Administration Volunteer Services, Red Cross volunteers ranging in age from teenagers to retirees, provide a number of support services to patients in VA medical centers. Services provided by Red Cross volunteers may include physical rehabilitation, social work, general ward help and information, library work, nursing and administration.
Visit the Long Beach VA Hospital website for additional information regarding services for veterans.
Red Cross emergency communication services keep military personnel in touch with their families following the death or serious illness of an immediate family member, the birth of a service member's child or grandchild or when a family faces other emergencies.
Where ever their military service takes them, he or she knows that the Red Cross will deliver notification in times of an emergency at home. Even if the service member receives an e-mail or phone call from home, Red Cross-verified information assists commanding officers with making a decision regarding emergency leave. Without this verification, the service member may not be able to come home during a family crisis.
The American Red Cross wants members of the National Guard, Reserves and other community-based military personnel to Get to Know Us Before You Need Us. All too often, members of the Reserves and National Guard don't know about available Red Cross services until they are mobilized.
Knowing in advance that communication links, access to financial assistance and counseling will be available in an emergency brings peace of mind to the military and to the families from which they are separated. Similarly, knowing that Red Cross services are available to inactive service members and their family members provides a safety net in times of need. Presentations are free!!
For more information contact Chris Campbell-Jay at (562) 595-6341 or Chris.Campbelljay@redcross.org.