As the nation prepares for the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service, the American Red Cross recognizes the volunteers who comprise more than 90% of our workforce.
Committed to helping all those in need, they deliver emergency support such as disaster relief, lifesaving blood, critical services for military families and veterans, lifesaving skills like CPR, international aid and so much more every day.
WHY I VOLUNTEER Sidney Murray II began volunteering eight years ago with the Red Cross to make a difference in his community. Over the years, he’s helped in many ways, including providing care and comfort to families displaced by home fires, supporting military families, welcoming blood donors to blood drives and delivering food to people unable to leave their homes during the coronavirus pandemic.
Sidney enjoys “the real tangible ability to help people in real time,” noting that helping others makes a difference — both for families in need and himself.
“If you try it once, you will see not only how you impact those in need, but how you are impacted,” he said.
HOW TO HELP On this day of service, consider becoming a Red Cross volunteer. Your support makes our humanitarian mission possible. Visit redcross.org/volunteertoday to learn more, including our most-needed volunteer positions with COVID-19 safety precautions in place:
Blood donor ambassadors and transportation specialists: Blood donations are essential to the health of our communities, and blood donor ambassadors are a vital part of this work by welcoming visitors and taking their temperatures before entering Red Cross facilities and blood drives. Visitors could include potential blood donors, people seeking help, training course participants, and Red Cross employees and volunteers. We also have a high priority need for transportation specialists to help deliver blood from our facilities to local hospitals.
Disaster Action Team: Everyday people are forced from their homes due to fires, storms and other disasters. Join the team that responds to more than 60,000 emergencies every year — the vast majority of which are home fires. Our volunteers help families with their immediate needs, ensuring they don’t face tough times alone. If you are team-oriented and want to make a difference, please consider joining the Disaster Action Team and apply now. We supply all the training you need.
Volunteer from home (other virtual positions): Help from the comfort of your own home through a wide range of virtual opportunities. Learn more.
Help Servicemembers and Veterans: Beginning January 18, the Red Cross Service to the Armed Forces will be participating in COVID-19 vaccination support activities, as well as other health-centered activities to accelerate the transition to a healthy and well military and veteran family community in 2021. On U.S. military installations in-country and overseas, professional medical volunteers will help administer COVID-19 vaccines to service members, as requested.
The Red Cross is also calling on non-medical volunteers to help inform and connect veterans. Volunteers will help connect and guide veterans on where to register if they would like to be vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccination. This will ensure the veteran community is able to safely register in their local community. If you’re interested in supporting service members and veterans, we encourage you to apply online to be a volunteer. Be sure to search for “SAF” in the search bar to find positions.
STAYING SAFE Everyone’s safety is our top priority, and we are working with public health officials to help keep our communities and volunteers safe during COVID-19. When considering volunteer opportunities, review the CDC guidance for people who are at higher risk for severe illness, consult your health care provider and follow local guidance.
Please volunteer today. Visit redcross.org/volunteertoday to get started.