Pizza Hut Partners with the Red Cross during April

Pizza Hut

Red Cross month may be over, but April marks the exciting launch of our Heroes Campaign for 2013. “Heroes for the American Red Cross” is a grassroots fundraising and awareness campaign that gives YOU the chance to make a real impact on the community. Heroes pledge to raise a minimum of $1,250 for the Red Cross during the campaign period. Participating Heroes can raise the money personally, as an organization or by hosting a fundraising event.

To help us celebrate this campaign, Pizza Hut will be offering a special meal deal through the entire month of April. A percentage of sales from this deal will go directly to the Red Cross to support disaster relief, health services and education, services to the armed forces and more! If you’d like to contribute to the cause but don’t want the special deal, you’ll have the opportunity to purchase a “Heroes” point-of-sale poster for a minimum $1 donation. This poster will be displayed all month to commemorate your generosity.

Be sure to come out to Pizza Hut this month to support your local Red Cross. You can also click here to order online.  If you or your organization is interested in joining the Heroes campaign, please contact Paula Thayer at Paula.Thayer@redcross.org or (803) 540-1219.

Groundbreaking in the City of North Charleston

From left to right: Jerry Tekac (NBSC), Sid Boone (Red Cross Board Vice Chair), Mason Holland (Red Cross Board Chair), Mayor Keith Summey(City of North Charleston), Louise Welch Williams (Red Cross Regional CEO) and Bob Behringer (Mall Drive 2424, LLC) break ground on future home of the Red Cross.

From left to right: On March 6th, Jerry Tekac (NBSC), Sid Boone (Red Cross Board Vice Chair), Mason Holland (Red Cross Board Chair), Mayor Keith Summey(City of North Charleston), Louise Welch Williams (Red Cross Regional CEO) and Bob Behringer (Mall Drive 2424, LLC) break ground on future home of the Red Cross.

March 6th was a very exciting day for the Carolina Lowcountry Chapter and the City of North Charleston!  

Mayor Keith Summey and the Red Cross joined Owner, Mall Drive 2424 LLC and Lender, National Bank of South Carolina as they broke ground on their new building that will be the future home of the Red Cross in the City of North Charleston.

The new building will be centrally located in the City of North Charleston at 2424 City Hall Drive and will provide the us with over 10,000 square-feet of office, educational, training and storage space to better serve its clients across the Lowcountry.  The new building is scheduled to open in December 2013.

“The new facility will be a place for our volunteers to come together and learn,” said Mason Holland, board chair, American Red Cross, Carolina Lowcountry Chapter. “The opportunity to expand our volunteer base and their knowledge will increase our capacity to support our Lowcountry 24 hours a day, 7 days a week through lifesaving education and response. The centralized location in North Charleston will allow for a more efficient response to disasters across our region and will allow us to better serve our community.”

March is Red Cross Month – Join the Movement!

March is American Red Cross Month and is a time for community members and businesses to join the Red Cross movement and help us carry out our lifesaving mission with a gift of time, money or blood.

Red Cross volunteers and staff members kick-off Red Cross Month by building a human red cross

Red Cross volunteers and staff members kick-off Red Cross Month by building a human red cross

March was first proclaimed as Red Cross Month 70 years ago by resident Franklin D. Roosevelt. Since 1943, every president, including President Obama, has designated March as Red Cross Month. The American Red Cross is synonymous with helping people, and has been doing so for more than 130 years.

We  respond to nearly 70,000 disasters a year in this country, providing shelter, food, emotional support and other necessities to those affected. We provides 24-hour support to members of the military, veterans and their families – in war zones, military hospitals and on military installations around the world; collect and distribute about 40 percent of the nation’s blood supply and train more than seven million people in first aid, water safety and other life-saving skills every year.

Last year in our community, the we provided emergency assistance to 5,041 adults and children that were affected by a disaster, handled 5,594 military emergency communications, trained 38,227 people in lifesaving skills and collected 109, 881 red blood cells and 27, 677 platelets. The Palmetto SC Region is made up of seven Red Cross chapters, serving 35 counties in South Carolina.

The Red Cross is not a government agency and relies on donations of time, money and blood to do its work. An average of 91 cents of every dollar given to the Red Cross is invested in helping people in need.

To learn more about how you can get involved visit Redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Midlands Students Make Holiday Greetings for the Troops!

Thank you very much to all the students across the Midlands who helped contribute to our 2012 Holiday Mail for Heroes program!  On December 4th, over 6,700 holiday cards created by students from Kershaw, Lexington, Newberry, Orangeburg and Richland school districts were presented to the American Red Cross, Columbia Region at Carver-Lyon Elementary School.

A group of studnts with some of the cards they decorated for the troops.

A group of students at Carver-Lyon Elementary School present the Red Cross with over 6,700 holiday cards for service men and women.

Students across the Midlands spent weeks designing, writing and putting finishing touches on their cards so that they could bring a “touch of home” to our troops during the holiday season.

HMFH School 12412 (45)

These creative cards made by students will be delivered to service men and women as part of the 2012 Red Cross Holiday Mail for Heroes program.

Colorful cards, including some written in Spanish, were created by students in conjunction with the Red Cross 2012 Holiday Mail for Heroes, a program that has collected millions of holiday wishes from everyday Americans expressing their gratitude to our service men and women stationed around the world.

Regional CEO Scott R. Salemme and Kitrina Wright presenting a certificate of thanks to Dr. Traci Cooper.

Regional CEO, Scott R. Salemme and Board Member,  Kitrina Wright present a certificate of appreciation to Dr. Traci Young Cooper for her leadership in challenging area schools to make over 6,700 holiday cards.

Time is running out to mail your cards! The last day to send in your cards to the troops is this Friday, December 7th. If you would like to participate, visit www.redcross.org/holidaymail to get started!

Please send your cards to the following address: Holiday Mail for Heroes, P.O. Box 5456, Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456. 

Give Something that Means Something this Holiday Season

This holiday season we are asking you to “give something that means something” by purchasing gifts from the 2012 Holiday Giving Catalog in honor of family, friends or colleagues.

You can support Red Cross programs by purchasing a variety of symbolic gifts. You can buy food and shelter for a disaster victim, phone cards for members of the military, vaccinations for an entire village and many other gift ideas. Catalog purchases come with greeting cards shoppers can send to a friend or loved one, letting them know a donation has been made in their name.

The purchase of each gift item is a tax-deductible contribution and provides support to the mission of the Red Cross. The catalog gifts are contributions toward a Red Cross program area, not a donation to a specific project or item.

Click here to start shopping our 2012 Holiday Giving Catalog.  

Holiday Giving Survey Results

Most Americans say that their giving to political causes in 2012 and Hurricane Sandy relief efforts will not reduce their year-end gifts to charity, according to a new poll by the American Red Cross.

A telephone survey of 1,010 adults conducted earlier this month found that 78 percent of those who have already given to Hurricane Sandy relief efforts say it will not impact their year-end charitable giving, while 90 percent of those who gave to political causes say it will not reduce their giving to non-profits this holiday season.

“We are very grateful for the strong support by the American public of the Red Cross relief response to Hurricane Sandy,” said Scott R. Salemme, regional chief executive officer, American Red Cross, Columbia Region. “The Red Cross, like other nonprofits, relies on funding throughout the year to support its mission to help those who need our help.”

Other key findings of the survey include:

  • The most popular ways people give are by putting money aside in a canister or giving to someone who is asking for a donation in a public place (both 56 percent) and mailing a check (52 percent). One in five (21 percent) say they have used a charity’s website to donate over the past 12 months.
  • Friends are influential in American’s charitable gift decisions, as half of all donors (51 percent) say they would donate if a friend talked to them personally about a charity.
  • Of social media users polled, 68 percent say they would take time to learn more about a charity if they see a friend posting about it; about half (51 percent) say they would have more respect for a friend that posts about a charitable donation and nearly four in ten (39 percent) said they would donate themselves.

While a majority of those polled said prior giving to political causes and Hurricane Sandy relief efforts will not impact their year-end financial donations, fewer Americans plan to give to charity this year than last year. The survey found that 52 percent of Americans are planning to donate to charity this season, down from 57 percent the past two years in similar Red Cross surveys.

Giving by those who do plan to donate to a nonprofit may be less: while 49 percent of those planning to give will give more than $50; nearly half (46 percent) say they will give less than $50. Last year, 39 percent of Americans who planned to give said they would give less than $50.

“Even if people can’t make a financial donation this holiday season, there are others ways to make a difference, such as by giving blood, volunteering or sending a holiday card to a service member,” said Salemme.

Friends Remain a Trusted Source of Information

When people are considering making a charitable donation, hearing personally from friends and family is an important factor in their decision. Nearly six in ten (59 percent) of those polled said they would sponsor a friend in a walk, run or bike ride for charity if asked, while half said they would donate if asked directly.

More than a third (36 percent) said they would attend a fundraising event, while 32 percent) would sponsor a friend taking an action to emphasize a charity’s mission, like living below the poverty line for a week.

Social Media’s Influence on Giving

Most donors continue to give through ways other than social media, but nearly a quarter of Americans (24 percent) say they influenced by an email or something they saw on social media. Of those social media users polled, nearly seven in 10 (68 percent) said they would visit a charity’s website or Facebook page if they saw a friend post about it, while 58 percent said they would ask their friend to tell them more about the donation.

Half said they would have more respect for someone who posted about donating online, while nearly four in 10 (39 percent) said they would donate money themselves.

Survey details: Telephone survey of 1,010 U.S. Adults 18 years and older on November 8-11, 2012 conducted in ORC International’s CARAVAN® survey  using a landline-cell dual-frame sampling design. Margin of error is +/- 3.1 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at blog.redcross.org.

Send Holiday Greetings to America’s Heroes!

While military deployments and hospital stays may keep many of our nation’s heroes away from their families this holiday season, the American Red Cross is collecting and distributing cards that send words of encouragement, gratitude and cheer as part of the Holiday Mail for Heroes” program.

Between October 1 and December 7, Americans can give something that means something by sending a card of thanks and support to members of the Armed Forces, veterans and their families.

It just takes a moment to sign a card to share your appreciation for the sacrifices members of the military community make. You say thanks, we’ll do the rest.

We are inviting the public to send messages of thanks and holiday cheer until December 7 by mailing cards to the following address:

Holiday Mail for Heroes
P.O. Box 5456
Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456

Our partner, Pitney Bowes Inc. receives cards at the special Holiday Mail post office box and screens them for hazardous materials. Pitney Bowes screens, packages and ships the cards at no charge, and contributes thousands of volunteer hours at sites around the country.

Volunteers make holiday cards at the Red Cross for members of the military during the 2011 Holiday Mail for Heroes program.

Red Cross volunteers across the United States and on military installations overseas then sort and deliver the cards throughout the holiday season. The Red Cross and Pitney Bowes have received and distributed more than 4.7 million cards for members of the U.S. Armed Forces, veterans and their families since the program began in 2006.

Last year we had great community participation. Across our 28-county region, over 34,000 cards from local schools, businesses, churches and community members were sent to the P.O. Box for distribution.  We hope that this year the community will once again come together to support our troops.

Students at Roswood Elementary in Columbia make cards for the troops during the 2011 Holiday Mail for Heroes program.

Students at Roswood Elementary in Columbia make cards for the troops during the 2011 Holiday Mail for Heroes program.

To ensure that cards are delivered in time for the holidays, they must be postmarked no later than December 7. Individuals are asked to refrain from sending “care packages,” monetary donations, or using glitter or any other kinds of inserts with the cards. More information and card requirements are at redcross.org/holidaymail.

The public can connect with fellow card senders through Facebook at facebook.com/redcross and Twitter.com/redcross using the hashtag #holidaymail.

The Red Cross relies on the support of the American people to carry out its mission of service to the 2 million members of the U.S. Armed Forces, 24 million veterans and their families. During this holiday season, people also can support all Red Cross services by making a financial donation at redcross.org or by calling 1-800-REDCROSS. Individuals can also give the gift of life by making an appointment to give blood at redcrossblood.org or by calling 1-800-REDCROSS.