March is Red Cross Month, and this March, the American Red Cross of Northeastern New York aims to install its 1,000th free smoke alarm of the 2016-2017 fiscal year. Since July 1, 2016, Red Cross staff, volunteers and partners across the Capital Region have installed more than 650 free smoke alarms for families in need as part of the national Home Fire Campaign. This campaign, which aims to reduce fire-related deaths and injuries by 25% over a five-year period, has already saved more than 150 lives across the country.
“Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half,” said David Kunzelman, regional disaster officer for the American Red Cross. “As we reach more and more families in our community with fire safety education and free smoke alarms, we are truly making a lifesaving impact.”
Local volunteers play a critical role in ensuring that the Red Cross is able to reach high-risk populations with Home Fire Campaign resources, including free smoke alarms. To that end, the American Red Cross of Northeastern New York will hold two half-day boot camp training sessions during Red Cross Month to welcome new volunteers to the Home Fire Campaign team:
Home Fire Campaign Volunteer Boot Camp
Saturday, March 4 or Saturday, March 11
10:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M.
American Red Cross of Northeastern New York
33 Everett Road, Albany, NY 12205
Interested volunteers need only attend one boot camp session, on either March 4 or March 11. During each half-day session, new volunteers will go through the on-boarding, orientation, and training required to serve on the Red Cross Home Fire Campaign Team. All participants will become registered Red Cross volunteers and will be able to make Home Fire Campaign visits to local households upon completion of training. On both boot camp dates, participants will have an opportunity to conduct home visits and begin installing smoke alarms immediately upon conclusion of the training session.
To join the Home Fire Campaign Team, volunteers must be at least 16 years old with a cell phone, email address, driver’s license, reliable transportation and the desire to help their neighbors prepare for and prevent home fires. No experience is necessary. All training is provided free of charge, and equipment such as ladders and drills are readily available to active volunteers.
Prospective volunteers may register for a boot camp session online, or contact Lauren Whitman at (518) 694-5103 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Anyone interested in having smoke alarms installed through the Home Fire Campaign may complete an online request form at redcross.org/eny/homefires or call (518) 694-5121 to schedule an appointment.