Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Letter from Heart of Tennessee Executive Director, Mike Cowles - July 2016


Fiscal Year 2016 was a heck of a year.  We experienced record flooding, massive wildfires, tornadoes, and a lot of house fires throughout the country, and the Red Cross was there every step of the way. What would you do if one of these disasters happened to you?  Below is a list of questions that I encourage you to ask yourself.

Do you have a disaster kit?  These are very simple to make and should contain basic items that will help you for 3-5 days.  The items you choose to include are up to you.

Rubbermaid box for storage of supplies
Bottled water
Flashlight with extra batteries
Nonperishable food
Paper towels
Wind up radio
Extra money
First aid kit

Do you have the American Red Cross apps downloaded on your cell phone?

Our apps contain a wealth of information on what to do in a particular scenario.  The apps are free and can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and Google Plan Store for Android by searching for the American Red Cross.

Emergency app
Tornado app
Hurricane app
Wildfire app
Earthquake app
First aid app
Pet first aid app

Do you and your family have a disaster plan?

This plan will make life a lot simpler in the event of an emergency or disaster.  More importantly, it is a must that everyone including your children understands what to do and where to go when something happens.  Things you may want to think about are:

2 designated locations to meet if you get separated
What types of disasters are common in your community
Evacuation routes
Phone numbers memorized of family and friends who you can reach easily
Remember your pets because they’re your family too

Do you have lifesaving training?

It is as simple as 1-2-3 to get the necessary training to save a life.  During an emergency or disaster it only takes moments for someone’s life to be in danger and being trained could be a matter of life or death.  The American Red Cross encourages you to take lifesaving courses to ensure that our community is prepared.  You can contact your local red cross or go to redcross.org to see when and where the next class is available.


By following some of these simple steps you can rest assure that your community will be better prepared for an emergency or disaster.  It takes all of us working together to make our lives better and to have a resilient atmosphere and we owe it to each other to do just that.  I appreciate what you do for your fellow neighbor and for the Red Cross.  Please feel free to visit our office and you might even walk away finding that special place you can fit in amongst the greatest volunteers on earth.


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