Your help is needed – A message from our Regional CEO

May 21, 2013. Moore, Oklahoma. Red Cross volunteer Angela Clemins hugs Moore resident Donna Giedrocz. Giedrocz has spent the day clearing debris from her home and expresses gratitude at the warm meal Clemins has brought her. Photo by Talia Frenkel/American Red Cross

Red Cross volunteer, Angela Clemins, hugs Moore resident, Donna Giedrocz.  Giedrocz has spent the day clearing debris from her home and expresses gratitude at the warm meal Clemins has brought her. Photo by Talia Frenkel/American Red Cross

On Monday the severe weather that has been ravaging the United States throughout the spring took a turn for the worse and brought heartbreaking devastation across the Midwest and the South, including Oklahoma, North Dakota, Tennessee, and Iowa. The damage is profound, widespread and the full impact still has yet to be realized.

American Red Cross disaster relief workers are on the ground as I write this, providing urgently needed assistance including food, water, shelter, cleanup supplies and emotional support to those who were affected. Our local volunteers have jumped into action and our helping. Just yesterday, we deployed three volunteers from the Palmetto SC Region to help with Oklahoma tornado relief efforts, and we anticipate that number to continue to increase. And we need your help.

The Red Cross is there for families in need and you can make a difference. We will be opening up additional shelters and delivering thousands of meals and water in the coming hours, days and possibly weeks ahead. But we can’t do any of this without the generosity of individuals like you. You can help people affected by disasters like tornadoes, floods and other crises by making a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief.

I hate to say it, but it isn’t over yet – the National Weather Service warns that the threat of severe weather continues from Texas to the Great Lakes. Be sure that you and your loved ones are prepared and stay safe. View Tornado Safety Tips or download the free Red Cross Tornado App.

Our hearts and prayers go out to the families impacted by the incredible damage. If you or a loved one need assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Thank you for helping families affected by disasters.

Warmest regards,


Louise Welch Williams
Regional Chief Executive Officer
American Red Cross
Palmetto SC Region

P.S. –  Click here to see more photos from our response in Oklahoma.

Windsor Green Fire Response: One Month Report

Microsoft Word - Myrtle Beach Response One Sheeter.doc

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 or (803) 540-1219.

Rachel Hodges takes on National Red Cross Leadership Role

Rachel Hodges Headshot_low res

Local American Red Cross Board Chairwoman and former First Lady of South Carolina (1999-2003), Rachel Hodges, has been named a member of the National Council for the Tiffany Circle Society of Women Leaders.

The Tiffany Circle is a society of women leaders and philanthropists from across the country that commit a minimum of $10,000 a year to support the important work of the Red Cross. As a National Council Member, Hodges will help ensure the future success of the Tiffany Circle program as the group embarks upon their eighth year in 2013-14. Since its inception just seven short years ago, the Tiffany Circle has grown from eight to 60 regional chapters throughout the country and is also expanding internationally into countries such as Canada, Mexico, France, Great Britain and Australia.

“The Tiffany Circle reflects a growing movement across the United States that women are leading the way when it comes to philanthropy,” said Rachel Hodges. “Women are the economic powerhouse of the 21st century and will be the primary holders of the wealth in America in just a few years. I am proud to serve on the National Council of the Tiffany Circle and continue mobilizing the power of women in philanthropy.”

Rachel Hodges welcomes Red Cross volunteers and staff at the Rachel Hodges Leadership that was held in May 2012 at Francis Marion University.

Rachel Hodges welcomes Red Cross volunteers and staff at the Rachel Hodges Leadership Institute that was held in May 2012 at Francis Marion University.

Rachel Hodges is a Pee Dee native and currently serves as the Chairwoman for the American Red Cross, Central South Carolina Chapter and the Chairwoman of the American Red Cross, Palmetto SC Region’s Advisory Council. In 2012, Hodges was instrumental in bringing the Rachel Hodges Leadership Institute to the campus of Francis Marion University. The six-day institute gave over 300 Red Cross staff and volunteers the opportunity to develop the necessary leadership skills to respond to small and large scale disasters throughout South Carolina and along the East Coast.

Hodges is a founding Bonnie McElveen-Hunter Lifetime Member of the Tiffany Circle Society of Women Leaders. Additionally, she and her husband, former Governor James H. Hodges, are members of the Clara Barton Society. In 2010, Hodges was presented the Clara Barton Society Award in recognition of her outstanding commitment to the Red Cross as a volunteer and philanthropist.

For more information on becoming a Tiffany Circle member, please call (803) 540-1220 or email

Come out FORE the Red Cross on April 29th!


Join us for the Second Annual SERVPRO and American Red Cross “Partners in Disaster Relief Golf Classic” on Monday, April 29th. The tournament will be held at Golden Hills Golf and Country Club in Lexington with an 11:00 a.m. shotgun start. Breakfast will be provided to all players prior to the shotgun start. 

Last year, the Cacye/West Columbia/Lexington, Dutch Fork and Richland County franchises of SERVPRO helped raise $7,000 for Red Cross programs and services through the golf classic. We’re proud to partner with SERVPRO again this year to support disaster relief in the Midlands.

The tournament has a $60 entry fee for individuals and a $240 entry fee for teams. All participants will be served a boxed lunch before tee-off. Teams can also purchase basic sponsorship and mulligan packages for the event. Spots are filling up fast, so be sure to register before the April 22nd deadline!

If you’re looking for a different way to get involved, a few sponsorship options are still available at this time. April 15th is the last day sponsorship submission will be accepted.

To register for the tournament or learn more about becoming a sponsor, please contact Tia Williams at 803-755-9774 or

7th Annual Auction Gives Hope to Disaster Victims

Saluda Auction

The Saluda County Advisory Council hosted its 7th annual Silent/Live Auction on Friday, March 1st at Juniper Restaurant to benefit the American Red Cross of Central South Carolina in Saluda County.

A total of $12,655 was raised at the auction, over $1,000 more than last year.  100% of the proceeds will go to local Red Cross disaster relief programs.

Paula Thayer, major gifts manager at the American Red Cross, was enthused to see record breaking fundraising and attendance at the auction. “Each year I am more amazed at the creativity, dedication and response from the people in Saluda County,” said Thayer.

When disaster strikes, Red Cross is there to provide immediate needs like clothing, shelter, food and life-sustaining medications as well as emotional support during these difficult times. Proceeds from the auction allow the Red Cross to provide these services free of charge to the victims.

Attendees enjoyed a variety of hors d’oeuvres and beverages while participating in the two auctions. The live auction offered jewelry, travel packages and original artwork while the silent auction boasted decorative items, tools and antiques donated by local merchants.

“Chef Brandon Velie and his wife, Jeanne, owners of Juniper Restaurant in Ridge Spring, do an outstanding job with the food and beverages,” said Thayer.

The Red Cross would like to thank all participants and donors who helped make the event a huge success.  Through the leadership of Monnie Romines (Chairperson), Jerrold Watson, Danny Tidwell, Judy Adamick, Melissa Rodgers and Phillips Boatwright of the Saluda County Advisory Council, this event gets better every year!

Disaster Alert: We Need Your Help

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