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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • Red Cross celebrates National Volunteer Week

  • During this year’s National Volunteer Week, being celebrated April 6-12, the American Red Cross Heart of Missouri Chapter is celebrating its volunteers and the work they do in the community to prevent and alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies.
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  • During this year’s National Volunteer Week, being celebrated April 6-12, the American Red Cross Heart of Missouri Chapter is celebrating its volunteers and the work they do in the community to prevent and alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies.
    More than 250 volunteers serve with the Heart of Missouri Chapter. Nationally, the Red Cross has nearly 400,000 volunteers, which represent more than 90 percent of the Red Cross workforce.
    “Our volunteers respond to house fires, teach lifesaving skills, support our military members in the community and much more,” said Executive Director Dave Griffith. “They help us fulfill our lifesaving mission every day, and we are overwhelmed with gratitude for their service.”
    Across the organization, the Red Cross has an average of 14 volunteers for every one employee. According to the Independent Sector, the 2012 value of volunteer time is $22.14 per hour, further evidence of the tremendous value and impact volunteers hold for nonprofits such as the Red Cross.
    In fiscal year 2013, Heart of Missouri Chapter volunteers provided food, shelter, comfort and hope to 706 youths and adults who faced home fires and other disaster situations.
    They trained 9,390 people in lifesaving skills and relayed 770 emergency messages between military members and their families.
    They also helped collect 42,500 units of blood and platelets from donors in the mid-Missouri area. On average, the Red Cross must collect 15,000 pints of blood every day from volunteer blood donors to meet the needs of patients at approximately 2,700 hospitals and transfusion centers across the country.
    People can go to www.redcross.org/hom to learn more about volunteer opportunities and how to submit a volunteer application. Those interested in hosting a blood drive or scheduling an appointment to give blood can visit redcrossblood.org.
    Last month, the Phelps County Commission signed a resolution recognizing March as Red Cross Month in Phelps County.
    Mike Flanagan, of the Red Cross, attended the commission meeting March 27 to extend the organization’s appreciation of the county’s support.
    Presiding Commissioner Randy Verkamp said the Red Cross provides assistance quickly, which Flanagan said was because of the “dedicated group of volunteers.”
    Jodi Waltman, administrator of the Phelps/Maries County Health Department, said she is a Red Cross volunteer nurse, one of “a handful of volunteers in Phelps County.” Waltman agreed that the Red Cross could “always use more volunteers.”

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