As Italy continues to dominate the international news cycle with stories of the coronavirus, U.S. service members and their families stationed in Italy are hunkering down and following precautions to stay safe. The American Red Cross office in Vicenza, Italy is supporting our troops through this trying time. Angela Lands is just one American Red Cross employee helping to support our military and their families.
Communicating in Crisis
Angela is considered “mission essential personnel” and takes her job very seriously. When COVID-19 struck Italy, she became the first and only Red Cross employee with access to the military base’s Emergency Operations Center. Currently, she focuses her efforts on responding to requests for assistance seven days a week. Her goal is to always be a focused and reliable Red Cross representative for our military community during this difficult time.
“I am no longer a normal community member – I am inundated with COVID-19 information,” Angela reports. She is a primary source of information for our military communities in Italy, helping them stay up to date during this pandemic.
We’re in This Together
Angela states that she is lucky to have a “hearty staff of volunteers.” Recently her team of volunteers banded together to get essential relief items to those in need. Before restrictions were put in place, volunteers worked around the clock to create comfort kits. These kits were distributed to quarantine rooms and houses for military families.
Angela credits her teammates by saying, “they are the only reason I can be available to do this work.” Despite the circumstances, she wants everyone back home in the U.S. to know, “spirits are still high.”
Looking Toward a Brighter Future
Finding a silver lining, Angela shares that this has been a learning experience and one that will help to guide how we respond to future emergencies and disasters. She knows her team is experiencing significant trials right now, but remarkably they still maintain the determination to help others. According to Angela, that desire and commitment to support our troops will never go away.
“I hope that this incident puts the Red Cross in the front of everyone's mind as a consistent source of support for the military community. Our job is to support our military and their families, even during the unknown, we are a constant.”
You Can Support Our Troops
In the face of emergencies, including COVID-19, the American Red Cross continues to support our military, veterans and their families domestically and overseas.
Find out how you can volunteer your time to support our military at home and across the globe by visiting online at redcross.org/saf or downloading our Hero Care app in English or Spanish.
You can find more information on COVID-19 safety here. For the latest information, please visit the CDC website at cdc.gov/covid19.
If you live outside the United States, health and safety tips can be found through the World Health Organization and by following your local Red Cross or Red Crescent society’s social media channels.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
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