Celebrities Support Red Cross Holiday Giving Campaign

 Television, movie and music personalities urge people to give the gift that saves the day

WASHINGTON, December 16, 2010 — More than a dozen celebrities are urging their fans and the public to donate to the American Red Cross this holiday season and give a gift that could save the day for someone in need.

Celebrities who are actively encouraging support for the Red Cross holiday giving campaign include actors Josh Duhamel, Marlee Matlin, Jane Seymour, Jackie Chan and Jimmy Smits; television personalities Dr. Phil McGraw, Nancy O’Dell and Leeza Gibbons; and award-winning music stars Chayanne, Reba, Rascal Flatts, Wynonna Judd, Sara Evans and Pat Green. All are members of the American Red Cross National Celebrity Cabinet.

The Red Cross holiday giving campaign features an online “Gifts that Save the Day” catalog that enables people to make a tax-deductible charitable donation this holiday season that could provide food and shelter for a disaster victim for a day; a military comfort kit with a robe, phone or music card and other supplies for a wounded warrior; or basic necessities for a family who lost everything in a disaster. 

Catalog gifts are contributions toward a Red Cross program area, not a donation to a specific project or item. The donations will be used to provide assistance where it is needed most within the program area; the remaining money is put to use where it is needed most. Many mobile phone owners can also make a $25 donation by texting GIFT to 90999.

Smits narrates the Red Cross holiday television advertisement, now airing across the country this season, which describes the Red Cross moment when people go from despair to hope during an emergency or disaster.

“This holiday season, I’m giving the gift of hope by supporting my local American Red Cross,” Reba said in a video message about the campaign. “Instead of sweaters and ties, I’m giving gifts from the Red Cross Holiday Giving Catalog.” Reba also has sent an e-mail to Red Cross supporters nationwide encouraging them to donate this holiday season.

Seymour is the primary celebrity spokesperson for the campaign and will be participating in a series of television and radio interviews promoting support of the Red Cross the last week of December, a time when many people make year-end tax-deductible donations to charities. 

“Perhaps it’s because my father was a doctor, or because I played one on television, but I think my favorite gift in the catalog is the gift of vaccination against measles,” Seymour said. “It’s a great honor to be asked to take part in this worthwhile endeavor for the American Red Cross. I can tell you from personal experience that the time I spend volunteering has enriched my life.”

“You can really make a difference for a lot of families by contributing to the Red Cross Holiday Gift catalog,” said Duhamel, who promoted giving to the Red Cross during an interview with Entertainment Tonight. Dr. Phil shared Red Cross inspirational items for military members on his recent holiday show. Donations in support of members of the military are among the most popular Red Cross contributions.

Celebrities are also reaching tens of millions of their fans and supporters by using their digital media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and websites to promote donations to the Red Cross.  

For example, Judd informed her Twitter followers, “$25 vaccinates 25 children around the world against measles. Wanna help? http://bit.ly/RCHoliday.” Chayanne, Rascal Flatts, Reba, Matlin, O’Dell, Evans, Green, Gibbons and Chan have “tweeted” or made Facebook or website postings, urging their followers to support the Red Cross holiday campaign. 

Each celebrity’s work on the holiday campaign is just the latest example of their support of the Red Cross.   

A recent Red Cross survey showed that despite the economy that has impacted so many Americans, people plan to give to charity this holiday season, with nearly six in ten (57 percent) planning to donate at least $50 to charitable causes over the holidays.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.

 

Tailgating for a Cause

Recoveron raises $1,515.00 to Benefit the American Red Cross during their Seven Packers Tailgate Parties

“It was a good first year raising $1,515.00 for the American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter,” said Andy Kaye, President, Recoveron Restoration.  “When we started the tailgates the main objective was to raise funds for American Red Cross and increase awareness of the needs of our community.”  Andy, his staff and their friends and family put on a free tailgate party for the community at seven home Packers games at 2036 S. Ridge Road, Green Bay. Guests were treated to brat, burgers and refreshments for a donation to the Red Cross.

“Frankly we were not sure what to expect,” said Kaye. “Not only did we accomplish our objective of raising money and awareness of needs for the Red Cross but also developed relationships with so many people that stopped by to support.”

Joe Hannon (Recoveron Marketing Director and coordinated all 7 tailgates), Steve Maricque, Andy Kaye, Brad Wery (Broadway Automotive)

“We appreciate the support and wish to thank the great people at Recoveron.  With their help, we are able to deliver the mission of the Red Cross,” said Steve Maricque, Executive Director for the American Red Cross, Lakeland Chapter.  “The financial gift from the proceeds of the tailgate parties will ensure that funds are available to meet the immediate needs of families impacted by disaster.” 

“I would like to personally thank everyone that supported the tailgates and express my admiration for all that volunteered to work the tailgates,” said Kaye. “We are already planning next years tailgate parties and are looking for other businesses to partner with us to raise additional funds for next year.”

Recoveron Restoration Services is a full-service restoration company, specializing in fire, water and mold restoration for both commercial and residential losses. Recoveron serves all of eastern Wisconsin with locations in Green Bay and Plymouth, WI.  For more information, go to: www.recoveron.com

About the American Red Cross: The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org. 

 

One Voice Through Social Media

We can text, twitter, post Facebook messages and use websites; so what is more important if you can’t do them all? With so many communication channels, did we stop communicating all together?  Are we over communicating? 

These are just a few of the questions Red Shoes PR, Inc. helped us navigate through. With their expertise, and guidance, we have launched NEWRedCross in several formats. They are shared resources so we speak with one voice to increase brand awareness, engage the community and increase volunteerism all while increasing the emotional connection to the American Red Cross.

Please join us on several social media sites under NEWRedCross, NEW stands for Northeast Wisconsin. If you can’t stop in to see us in person, please do join our viral applications. We look forward to connecting with you!

Volunteer Spotlight: Melissa Konrath, President, UWGB Red Cross Club

(l-r) Michelle Etheridge, musician, Rob Anthony and Melissa Konrath at last years Red Cross Club Awareness Concert on Campus.

As a University of Wisconsin- Green Bay student, Melissa Konrath, 20 years old, is active on-campus and in intramural sports. She is also active in the American Red Cross as president of the UWGB –Red Cross Club.

The UWGB Red Cross Club is an on-campus organization that provides opportunities for students to get involved in the community through things like CPR training, disaster training and volunteering. Its mission also includes raising awareness to the community services and needs of the American Red Cross. They also don’t forget to bring the fun in this social and interactive environment.

As a class officer in her high school in Slinger, WI, Melissa, helped to plan and run blood drives so she was familiar with the Red Cross as an organization. As a student at UWGB, she joined the Red Cross Club on campus its first year. “I thought it would be a good way to get back into volunteering,” says Melissa.

“I have learned that there is more to the Red Cross than blood drives.  I think that is a common misconception throughout the general population,” says Melissa.

Melissa served as Vice President the first year and was recruited as president of the club for the experience she could bring to the role the next year.

Since the club’s inception in the spring 2009 semester they have supported the Red Cross in many ways. Their members have volunteered for a variety of fundraisers including a concert for Haiti. They also made cards for the Holiday Mail for Heroes program, making comfort dolls for AIDS orphans in Africa, babysitting to support Military Services, volunteering for the Packers Spooktacular and Project Leap events, participated in service to help at a Downtown Green Bay clean-up day and help at on-campus and community blood drives.  The clubs signature  event is organizing an annual concert with musician, Rob Anthony, to raise Red Cross Awareness on-campus to the students and faculty.

“I am amazed at how much the Red Cross Club on campus has grown and all that we have accomplished since the club was first brought to UWGB.  Because we are growing each year, our accomplishments also have expanded as well as getting the word out there of the mission of the Red Cross,” says Melissa.

When Melissa isn’t busy volunteering with the Red Cross she is spending time with friends and family including her 5 year-old-sister. She is also busy working towards a double major in Psychology and Human Development.

“The Red Cross is something worth making time for because you know you are helping others and can even sometimes see first-hand your impact.”

(l-r) Mellisa and Jody Weyers, Red Cross Club Staff Advisor, at UWGB Fall Org Smorg recruitment event.

The Perfect Gift

 

Text GIFT to 90999 and help the Red Cross

Mobile Givers Can Text a $25 Donation Now Through December 31

Cell phone users can text the word GIFT to 90999 from now through December 31 to make a $25 donation to the American Red Cross.

Donations will support the work of the local Red Cross, including disaster response, collecting lifesaving blood, teaching skills that can save a life, or assisting military members and their families.

This new mobile giving program, which runs through December 31, is the first to be done with a number of wireless carriers with a holiday-themed keyword and a $25 amount.

“Over three million people made a $10 donation via text to help the people of Haiti last January.  We are now asking them to help the work of the American Red Cross down the street, across the country, and around the world by making a holiday gift of $25 by text,” said Peggy Dyer, chief marketing officer of the American Red Cross. “A few finger taps on a cell phone can be the gift that saves the day for a person affected by disaster.”

The pilot program is being done with mGive, which partnered with the Red Cross on the highly successful Haiti mobile giving effort which raised nearly $33 million for Haiti relief and recover through $10 text donations. Many leading wireless carriers are participating.

“The American Red Cross has truly embraced the power of mobile giving,” said Brian Leamy, Executive Vice President of mGive. “Through the introduction of this new $25 donation level, the American Red Cross will play a vital role in continuing to expand and broaden the mobile donation market. mGive is proud to be the American Red Cross’ partner of choice for mobile donations and will continue to support them in their expanding mobile efforts.”

People who make a $25 text donation will be sent a link to download a badge for their Facebook pages. Donations will appear on customers’ monthly bills or be debited from prepaid account balances. Message and data rates may apply. The Red Cross is working with mGive to process and facilitate the mobile donations.

The text donation program is another part of the Red Cross holiday giving campaign, which also features an online holiday giving catalog, www.redcross.org/gifts.  The Red Cross has more than 20 gift ideas — such as assisting someone in the military with a phone card or supplies, providing food and shelter to a disaster victim, covering the costs of snacks at a blood drive, or giving basic necessities to a family in another country. 

The purchase of each gift item through the online catalog is a tax-deductible contribution to the overall mission of the American Red Cross.  On the rare occasion when donations exceed the need in a particular area, the Red Cross will use the contribution to help others where the need is greatest.   

About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.

Students at Maplewood Middle School particpate in Holiday Mail for Heroes Campaign

The students at Maplewood Middle School, in Menasha, collected and wrote over 369 holiday greeting cards to the men and women serving in the military as part of the Holiday Mail for Heroes Campaign. They worked with the American Red Cross and Pitney Bowes campaign to send holiday greetings to those military members who cannot come home for the holidays. 

Paul Fruit and Nick Cluppert, Red Cross Staff with some of the students who made cards.

Kayleigh Kaminski and Kaylee Kuhn are seen handing over the greeting cards to Nick Cluppert and Paul Fruit, from the Red Cross.

12 Days of Holiday Safety

In the spirit of the season, the American Red Cross offers 12 holiday safety tips.

With last-minute gifts to buy, social events to attend and family and friends to visit while the weather outside is frightful, the American Red Cross has 12 days of health and safety tips to make the holiday season safe, happy and bright.

  1. Prepare your vehicle for traveling to grandmother’s house. Make an emergency kit and include items such as blankets or sleeping bags, jumper cables, fire extinguisher (5 lb., A-B-C type), compass and road maps, shovel, tire repair kit and pump, extra clothing, flares, tow rope.
  2. Drive your sleigh and reindeer safely. Avoid driving in a storm, but if you must, keep your gas tank full for emergency use and to keep the fuel line from freezing. Let someone know your destination, route and when you expect to arrive.
  3. Help prevent the spread of the flu. Wash hands with soap and water as often as possible, or use hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.Use sanitizing wipes to disinfect hard surfaces such as airplane tray tables, luggage handles, cell phones, door handles and seat armrests.
  4. Prevent hypothermia by following Santa’s lead. Dress in several layers of lightweight clothing, which will keep you warmer than a single heavy coat.Wear a hat, preferably one that covers your ears. Seek medical attention immediately if you have symptoms of hypothermia, including confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering.
  5. Use a Red Cross-trained babysitter when attending holiday festivities. Red Cross-certified babysitters learn to administer basic first aid; properly hold and feed a child; take emergency action when needed; monitor safe play and actively engage your child; and some may be certified in Infant and Child CPR.
  6. Avoid danger while roasting chestnuts over an open fire. Stay in the kitchen while you are cooking and be alert. Keep anything flammable—such as potholders, towels or curtains—away from your stove top.Have a “kid-free zone” of at least 3 feet around the stove and areas where hot food or drinks are prepared or carried.
  7. Be a lifesaver during the holidays and always. The Red Cross recommends at least one person in every household should be trained and certified in first aid and CPR/AED. Your local Red Cross chapter has conveniently scheduled courses and can have you trained and certified in a few hours.
  8. Designate a driver or skip the holiday cheer. When you designate a driver who won’t be drinking, you help make sure a good party doesn’t turn into a tragedy. A good host ensures there are non-alcoholic beverages available for drivers. The designated driver should not drink any alcoholic beverages, not even one.
  9. When the weather outside is frightful, heat your home safely. Never use your stove or oven to heat your home. Never leave portable heaters or fireplaces unattended. Install smoke alarms on every floor of your home and outside all sleeping areas and test them once a month.
  10. Cut down on your heating bills without being a Grinch. Get your furnace cleaned by a professional; change the filters regularly. Make sure heat vents aren’t blocked by furniture. Close off any rooms you aren’t using and close heat vents or turn off radiators in those rooms. Use either insulating tape or caulking strips to surround your windows and door moldings. Put up storm windows or storm doors to keep the cold out.
  11. Don’t move a muscle, until they buckle. Each person in your vehicle should have their seatbelts securely fastened before driving off. Ensure children are buckled up and their car seats are installed appropriately based on their age and size. Children 12 and under should always sit in the back seat.
  12. Resolve to Be Red Cross Ready in the New Year. You can take one or more actions to prepare now, should you or your family face an emergency in 2011. Get a kit. Make a plan. Be informed.

Best wishes for a safe and happy holiday from the American Red Cross.

American Red Cross Transportation Service Discontinued in Door County Effective January 1, 2011

The American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter Transportation Service in Door County will be discontinued as of January 1, 2011. This service began in Door County in 2002.  Since its beginning, our mission has been to meet the transportation needs of elderly and individuals with disabilities by providing safe, reliable and affordable transportation.

The past two years has been very challenging as we have continued to operate our service in Door County.  During this time, the overall transportation environment has changed which has impacted our service.  There are now other transportation options available to Door County residents that can meet the needs going forward.

“The American Red Cross is proud of the transportation service we have provided in Door County since its beginning in early 2002,” said Steve Maricque, Executive Director, Lakeland Chapter. “We appreciate the opportunity to have served many in the community and wish to thank our dedicated volunteer drivers, funding partners and donors for their wonderful support over the years.”

Please note that this announcement impacts only our Transportation Service in Door County.  We will continue to provide Disaster Services, Services to Armed Forces and Health and Safety training.

 About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.

Good Food for a Good Cause: Last Chance Opportunity!

This Sunday is your last chance to support the American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter at the Recoveron Restoration Packers Tailgate Party. Andy Kaye, President, Recoveron Restoration, his staff, guests and the community have done an awesome job of showing their support of the local Red Cross Chapter at the past six tailgate parties.

This is the last one of the season to stop by and enjoy food and refreshments provided by Recoveron. Donations are encouraged by the general public and Recoveron guests to help support the Red Cross humanitarian efforts.  

When: Sunday, December 5th vs. San Francisco 49ers (12:00 p.m.)

 Where: The tent will be located at 2036 S. Ridge Road (one block south of Kroll’s West).

 Time: The tent set up 3 hours before game time: 9:00am-Noon