Leaders of NOAA’s National Weather Service and the American Red Cross signed a groundbreaking agreement today that will enhance collaboration between the organizations before and during large-scale weather disasters.
This agreement designates the Red Cross as a National Weather Service core partner and reinforces that the agency can provide impact-based decision support services to the Red Cross at any level, including the local chapters supporting disaster preparedness and response. The Red Cross, which has a Congressional Charter to provide humanitarian and disaster relief services, is the first nonprofit organization to hold this formal designation.
A key part of the National Weather Service’s mission is supporting public safety officials who make key decisions to protect life and property in the face of extreme weather. Called “impact-based decision support services,” this assistance to core partners includes weather forecast advice and interpretations of the impacts a weather event will bring. Until now, “core partners” have consisted of local, state and federal governmental organizations. The Red Cross is often involved in formal response efforts, working closely with established public sector core partners to plan preparation and recovery efforts during weather disasters, making the organization uniquely positioned to receive weather support directly from the National Weather Service.
“Our symbiotic partnership with the Red Cross is based on mutual trust and reflects a shared mission to serve American communities in times of their greatest need,” said Ken Graham, director of the National Weather Service. “It’s a privilege for us to provide targeted weather analysis when needed to support the disaster relief work of Red Cross staff and volunteers.”
“We are honored to be the first nonprofit organization named as a core partner of the National Weather Service,” said Gail J. McGovern, president and CEO of the American Red Cross. “Every single moment matters during a disaster and this collaboration is critical to ensure we can continue to build more resilient communities and provide hope for people facing unimaginable loss.”
Under the agreement, the organizations will also work together and in collaboration with other core partners, on disaster preparedness education, outreach engagements and materials, and events, and coordinate training, exercise, and planning meetings.
The National Weather Service provides weather, water and climate data, forecasts, warnings, and impact-based decision support services for the protection of life and property and enhancement of the national economy.
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.
John Moore, 202-603-2523; firstname.lastname@example.org (National Weather Service)
Nicole Maul, 559-320-6224; email@example.com (American Red Cross)