2022 has been a year of crisis for families in our local communities, across the country, and around the world — from Hurricane Ian to the first-ever national American Red Cross blood crisis.
“Whether a crisis is felt by an entire community or a single person, it turns lives upside down — especially for the most vulnerable,” Erica Mani, Chief Executive Officer of American Red Cross Central Appalachia Region, said. “This holiday season, join us to provide help and hope for people in need during future emergencies by making a financial donation, volunteering, or by giving blood.”
On Giving Tuesday and during the holidays, visit redcross.org to make a financial donation or an appointment to give blood for patients in the U.S. Individuals can also find for volunteer opportunities in their area.
RESPONDING TO DISASTERS OF ALL SIZES This year’s extreme disasters in the U.S. are clear examples of the increasing frequency and intensity of the climate crisis. So far, in 2022, 15 billion-dollar disasters have upended lives across the country — more than twice the number of billion-dollar disasters that struck annually two decades ago.
For these and tens of thousands of other disasters in the Central Appalachia Region and across the country, Red Cross volunteers have worked 24/7 to provide shelter, food, and care — including flooding, tornadoes, deploying to assist those impacted by flooding in Kentucky, Hurricane Ian, wildfires in the west and so much more.
In the Central Appalachia Region, Red Cross volunteers have also provided relief and comfort after home fires and other local disasters to help ensure no one faces a crisis of any size alone.
HELPING FAMILIES AFFECTED BY GLOBAL EMERGENCIES Internationally, the conflict in Ukraine has forced millions of people to flee for their lives. With such vast needs, the American Red Cross has provided financial donations and international crisis responders to support the global Red Cross network’s response on the ground, which spans more than a dozen neighboring countries to deliver food, shelter, medical care, emotional support and other critical aid for displaced families.
Meanwhile, the American Red Cross has also provided financial support to the ongoing hunger crisis in Africa. Overall this year, as part of the world’s largest humanitarian network, the American Red Cross provided humanitarian aid in more than 108 countries. Here in the Central Appalachia Region, Red Cross international efforts included International Humanitarian Law courses, Restoring Family Links, and more.
PROVIDING SUPPORT FOR PERSONAL EMERGENCIES In Central Appalachia Region, Red Cross workers have helped people through personal emergencies too, whether it was connecting a loved one with a deployed service member during a family crisis or training people to provide CPR for those suffering from cardiac arrest. In 2022, over 1,100 military families were supported during a crisis, and nearly 15,000 people were trained in lifesaving skills in the Central Appalachia Region.
OVERCOMING THE FIRST-EVER RED CROSS BLOOD CRISIS In January 2022, the Red Cross experienced its worst national blood shortage in over a decade due to ongoing collection challenges and varied hospital demand during the pandemic. Patients in need of lifesaving blood transfusions relied on an outpouring of support from hundreds of thousands of generous blood donors to overcome the crisis. In 2022, almost 45,000 units of lifesaving blood were collected in our area.
Beyond national headlines, the need for blood is constant. One in 7 patients entering a hospital will need a blood transfusion. As seasonal illness and the threat of winter weather ramp up this holiday season, make a donation appointment and be a lifeline for car accident victims, parents with complicated childbirths, individuals battling cancer, and people with sickle cell disease.
Give thanks and give back — now is the time to make and keep blood donation appointments. Book a time to give at RedCrossBlood.org. As a thank-you, all those that come to give November 23-27 will get an exclusive Red Cross beanie, while supplies last. Thanks to our partners at Amazon, all donors who come to give blood from November 28 – December 15 will receive a $10 Gift card by email.*
Visit the Year-In-Review website for more information about how the Central Appalachia Region helped people in 2022 at redcross.org/car.