For assistant store director Shilo Lillo, Albertsons’ partnership with the Red Cross raising money for disaster relief has very real significance.
Some 20 years ago, Lillo’s mother, Karen, was living in northern Oregon when a late-night electrical fire destroyed her mobile home. She was able to escape unharmed but lost almost everything she owned. Soon after, Red Cross was on the scene helping however they could.
“That night the Red Cross showed up and brought her some blankets and a few clothing items and put her and her husband up in a hotel,” said Lillo, who works at the Albertsons store on South Federal Way in Boise.
Lillo said Red Cross found a hotel for his mother and her husband that also accommodated their cat and helped them stay there for an extended period.
“The Red Cross was there from the fire onward, until they got another place,” he said.
Through Aug. 21, Albertsons customers across Idaho can donate to Red Cross disaster relief and help others like Karen through their customer donation program. Those donations can be made at the check stand as customers pay for their groceries and will help the humanitarian organization respond to local disasters such as wildfires, floods and home fires.
The Red Cross of Idaho and Montana responded to more than 440 disasters last year alone -- the vast majority of which are home fires -- by providing safe shelter, food, emotional support, first aid and health services, and emergency relief supplies such as blankets and hygiene items. Red Cross also helps replace items like eyeglasses and medications.
“The Red Cross is such a huge part of all the communities across the United States and even the world,” Lillo said. “They’re there for support and to help people through a traumatic time. These people are servants to other people, and it’s just remarkable.”
Last year, the Albertsons customer donation program raised $138,600 at more than 80 stores across seven states.
“We are incredibly grateful to Albertsons Companies and their generous customers,” said Nicole Sirak Irwin, regional CEO of the Red Cross of Greater Idaho and Montana. “They are a valuable partner who makes it a priority to help communities and families recover when disasters strike.”
Lillo said his mother is doing well and has moved to Nevada so she can be near her new grandchild. And two decades later, she’s still extremely grateful for all the Red Cross did to help her through an incredibly difficult time.
“She always told me that if I were to ever donate or give money to any charity always give to the Red Cross,” Lillo said. “They were willing to do whatever it took to make her experience better than what it was in that moment.”
To learn more about the Red Cross of Greater Idaho and see how you can get involved, visit www.redcross.org/idaho or call 800-853-2570.
The Red Cross will install free smoke alarms in your home and teach your family about fire safety. To take part in that program, visit getasmokealarm.org.