Tips for international students to get involved in American culture



How to Get Involved With the American Red Cross

Three Methods:

The American Red Cross is the world's foremost emergency response organization. Its services include supporting military personnel and their families, international disaster relief and development, blood collection and distribution, and safety and health education. Given all that the American Red Cross does, there are many different ways to get involved.

Steps

Volunteering Your Time and Skills

  1. Contact your local chapter of The Red Cross.The best way to find out about volunteer opportunities in your hometown is to directly contact your local chapter. The Red Cross runs numerous programs that work with different sectors of the community. They will have knowledge about upcoming events or places that are in need of immediate help.
    • If you are not sure if you have a local chapter, then you can input your ZIP code online at to find a list of volunteer opportunities near you.
  2. Get a Red Cross ID through the Volunteer Connection website.In order to browse or even apply to most of the volunteer opportunities The Red Cross offers, you are going to have to go online and create a Red Cross ID through The Red Cross Volunteer Connection portal.
    • The simple online form requires you to provide your full name, home or mailing address, and email address, and to create a password.
    • If you are an applicant under the age of 13, then you will have to visit your local chapter with your parents, and have your parents fill out a consent form.
  3. Assist The Red Cross’ Friendly Visitor program to work with the elderly.With this program, you will be providing companionship to homebound seniors, as well as accompanying them to their health appointments.
    • If your local chapter offers this program, then you will need to fill out a simple application, and pass a Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector check. Once that is complete, you are then expected to volunteer one hour of your time each week.
  4. Help The Red Cross Youth Program reach local youth.This is a great opportunity if you are looking for a task that involves working with the youth in your community. You could be involved in recruiting and coordinating youth volunteers, or you may even be asked to supervise youth projects.
    • To help support The Red Cross Youth Program, you will have to contact your local chapter office to find out what opportunities are available. Your local chapter will direct you on any additional requirements needed depending on what task you are assigned.
  5. Join The Red Cross House program to help local homeless shelters.Through this program, you will be helping provide food and shelter to those who are experiencing homelessness.
    • If you want help local homeless shelters through The Red Cross, then you will first have to get in contact with your local chapter to see what opportunities are available. Just make sure to have your Red Cross ID handy in case you need it to fill out any applications.
  6. Ask your local chapter if office help is needed.If you are looking to put your office skills to the test, then find out if your local chapter needs help in getting organized for events or completing other clerical tasks like keying data into a computer, stuffing envelopes, filing or performing inventory checks.
    • If you are looking for more challenging office work that is less clerical, see if you can help coordinate volunteers by writing their job descriptions, running orientation, keeping volunteer records, or matching volunteers with opportunities.
  7. Teach a safety class offered by The Red Cross.Safety and health classes include CPR, first aid, babysitting, lifeguarding, and swimming, just to name a few. This is a great opportunity for people who have experience in teaching or who are already certified safety instructors.
    • To become an instructor you will have to undergo training and certification. If this is something you are interested in, then you will have to contact The Red Cross Training Support Center directly to begin the process.
  8. Become a Red Cross board member to help expand the organization.If you are looking for something more permanent than just volunteering for a single event, you can even become a board member of your local Red Cross chapter, military station, or service region, and help the organization develop policies and strategies when fulfilling its mission.
    • In order to get started with becoming a board member, you will need to contact your local chapter and get to know the people who already work there. A position like this requires you to show volunteer-initiative within your community. So it is best to frequently volunteer with your local chapter before pursuing this option.

Donating and Fundraising

  1. Donate financially to the American Red Cross.Donations of any amount can be given via the phone, text messages, or mail. Donations starting a .00 can also be made online. Aside from direct donations, you can also give stocks and mutual funds to The Red Cross, or leave the organization money in your will.
    • If you want, you can even donate your money to specific causes such as disaster relief or to the “Home Fire Campaign,” which helps families recover from home fires.
  2. Join an established fundraiser online via CrowdRise.The American Red Cross hosts special fundraising drives through CrowdRise when a special circumstance arises or a disaster strikes. To find one, you just simply go to The Red Cross CrowdRise website and pick a fundraiser that speaks to you.
  3. Create a fundraiser via CrowdRise for a cause close to your heart.Popular fundraising ideas range from honoring a loved one to showing school spirit to rallying the community in a demonstration of athleticism. But don’t let this limit you, you are encouraged to come up with your own idea proposal and submit it online to CrowdRise.
  4. Host an in-person auction or raffle to get the community involved.This can be a great addition to an already scheduled event in your community. If this is your first time hosting an auction or raffle, then try and get a small group of people together to help you plan it.
    • In order to host an auction or raffle, you will need to submit a “Request to Use The Red Cross Brand” form that details what you will be auctioning or raffling, and where it will be held.
  5. Make a purchase through The Red Cross Store.Any purchases made through its website directly benefits The Red Cross. This is a very easy way to both prepare your home for a potential natural disaster, and give back to the organization.
    • Some of the items you can purchase are T-shirts, first aid supplies, and LED flashlights.
  6. Give your unused flyer miles to help transport volunteers.The Red Cross is partnered with four major airlines that allow you to donate your unused flyer miles. The miles are then used to transport volunteers and staff to areas in critical need. To donate miles, just contact your airline provider to see what partnered program they have in place.
    • The airlines that are currently partnered with The Red Cross are American Airlines, Delta Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines.
  7. Donate an unwanted vehicle instead of selling it.If you have an old or unused vehicle of any sort, then you can donate it to The Red Cross. While this might sound complicated, the entire process is actually quite simple and done at your convenience.
    • To get started on donating a vehicle, you just have to either call the affiliated program at 855-927-2227 or fill out the “1 Easy Step” form posted online. A representative will then contact you in 24 hours to finalize the donation, and schedule a pickup time that works best for you.

Giving Blood

  1. Determine your eligibility to donate blood.There are four types of blood donations: whole, red power, platelet, and AB elite plasma. Each has extensive eligibility requirements that factor in your weight, age, current health, international travel experiences, and frequency of donating. So make sure to that you meet the specific criteria for the desired method of donating.
    • If you are unsure if you are eligible, you can always contact a representative at The Red Cross and find out.
    • If you can't give blood, then offer your time at a blood drive instead. Volunteers help register donors, work the canteen area, and help navigate donors through the process. There's also a need for blood donor recruitment, which involves scheduling blood drives in the community.
  2. Find a blood service station near you and schedule an appointment.Just by entering your ZIP code on the "Blood Donation Scheduling" page on The Red Cross website, you can find a list of active blood drives in your local area.
    • You can even download the "Blood Donor" app to conveniently find local blood drives and schedule appointments.
  3. Complete a RapidPass application online before your appointment.The application is a pre-screening of personal information, medical history, and eligibility. The whole application should only take 10 to 15 minutes to complete.
  4. Print or download your RapidPass.You are going to need to bring your RapidPass to your appointment, so have it ready to go ahead of time.
  5. Register and sign in at the facility on the day of your appointment.During registration you will be asked to sign in, present a valid ID, and read some required information about the donation process.
    • If you have your RapidPass with you, then this would also be the time you present it.
  6. Undergo a small physical exam.Even if you have completed your RapidPass, you may be asked to privately review your health history and have a mini-physical examine before donating.
  7. Stay relaxed while donating.During the donation process you will be seated for approximately 8 to 10 minutes depending on the type of donation. If you are nervous, then start a conversation with someone near you to help keep yourself relaxed.
    • After giving your blood donation, you will be offered snacks or drinks that will help you recover from any lightheaded feelings you may be experiencing.

Community Q&A

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  • Question
    How can I find the nearest Red Cross center?
    Top Answerer
    Go to RedCross.org/find-your-local-chapter.
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Date: 09.12.2018, 09:28 / Views: 95565


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