Volunteer Stories

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By volunteering, you can make a difference in someone's life every day. Make the decision to become part of a life-changing experience. Start your volunteer story today and sign up to volunteer for the American Red Cross.

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Read stories from American Red Cross volunteers. What will your story be?

Pat and Emily Quinn

Pat and Emily Quinn
Pat and Emily Quinn

Father and daughter pair, Pat and Emily Quinn have been volunteering together for the American Red Cross Rhode Island Chapter since the Rhode Island floods of 2010. Pat joined the Red Cross to provide assistance during Hurricane Katrina. Emily joined out of curiosity about her father’s time and activities with the Chapter. Now working as a volunteer team, they do their best to help as many people as they can and enjoy the satisfaction and appreciation that comes from their time and effort. They agree that it’s important the community understand that there is more to the Red Cross than blood drives. To that end, the Quinns have dedicated their time to Disaster Action Team responses, sheltering, comfort stations, first aid stations and information stations. Emily’s goal for her future as a volunteer is simple: “My goal is mainly to help as many people as I can.” She’s also considering Shelter Management and is open to the possibility of a national deployment. Through their Red Cross volunteer responsibilities, the Quinns can achieve their mutual goals of helping the people of their community in their time of need and sharing that experience with each other. “What I get is appreciation from those we’ve helped. Having her with me makes it even better. It’s something we can do together” says Pat.

Short version:

Pat joined the Red Cross during Hurricane Katrina. Emily joined out of curiosity about her father’s activity. Now a volunteer team, the Quinns dedicate their time to disaster response, sheltering, comfort stations, first aid stations and information stations. Emily’s goal is simple: “My goal is mainly to help as many people as I can.” “What I get is appreciation from those we’ve helped. Having her with me makes it even better,” says Pat.

Carol Anderheggen

Carol Anderheggen
Carol Anderheggen

Carol Anderheggen knew that she would spend her retirement volunteering in her community. She tried other organizations but did not find a fit until she walked into the American Red Cross Rhode Island Chapter in 1997. On national deployments, Carol was able to contribute her experience as a media specialist to Disaster Services Technology. Locally, Carol provides disaster response and serves as the Disaster Workforce Administrator for the chapter. Carol feels that the most important service the Red Cross provides is preparing the community before a disaster happens. She also appreciates the Red Cross’s discipline in constantly preparing itself, through trainings and exercises, so it is always ready to effectively respond to the communities it services. Carol considers her work with the Red Cross to be a calling and a way of making a contribution to society. “It’s important to be attached to something bigger than you.”

Short version:

After retiring, Carol tried several organizations before joining the Red Cross. On national deployments, her experience as a media specialist helps Disaster Services Technology. Locally, Carol is a disaster responder and is the Disaster Workforce Administrator for the Rhode Island chapter. She considers her work with the Red Cross a way of contributing to society. “It’s important to be attached to something bigger than you.”