2006-10-06 / Community

Sanders, Red Cross Address Emergency Preparedness

On Thursday, September 28, at a town hall meeting hosted by New York City Council Member James Sanders, Jr., approximately 90 Rockaway residents received important information about becoming personally prepared for a local emergency.

Held at the New York City Housing Authority Edgemere Community Center (57-10 Beach Channel Drive, Rockaway), the American Red Cross in Greater New York-Queens was among the presenters. The organization provided residents with details about preparing for fires, floods and coastal storms.

Sanders was very interested in the Red Cross disaster backpack, also known as a "Go Bag," which contains supplies (including water, food bars, flashlight and batteries) that people will need if an emergency forces an evacuation from apartments and houses. The emergency kit is available from the Queens office of the Red Cross (138-02 Queens Boulevard 718-558-0053) or online at www.nyredcross.org . Its contents should be supplemented with personal items such as important documents, prescription glasses and medications.

Red Cross volunteers provided attendees with information about the programs and services, including classes that are available from the organization throughout New York City. Queens volunteers Vladimir Stoyanov, Dianne Smith and Jackie Ayer explained the various reasons they choose to volunteer for the Red Cross and how they enjoy helping fellow New Yorkers during their time of need.

Volunteer opportunities with the Red Cross are available in the five boroughs of New York City and Orange, Putnam, Rockland and Sullivan Counties. Volunteer specialists will match talents, interests and availability with opportunities, which include helping victims of disasters, teaching safety and preparedness programs, and providing translation services.

Students (ages 14-18) can participate in all service areas while also helping organize community programs for homeless children and disaster victims.

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