Red Cross Month and Reconnecting Families

Story by Jon Dillon, Casework and Outreach Associate, Washington, DC

Did you know March is Red Cross Month? Every year since Franklin D. Roosevelt declared the first Red Cross month in March of 1943, each U.S. President has dedicated March to recognizing the role of the American Red Cross in serving communities across the United States and around the globe (read Obama's proclamation here). From responding to local disasters, to installing fire alarms in homes, to providing life-saving skills such as CPR and first-aid to communities, the Red Cross works through the dedication and commitment of volunteers to alleviate human suffering.

This is also a time to recognize the important work of the American Red Cross in reconnecting families separated internationally by conflict, disaster, migration and other humanitarian crises. As wars displace entire communities, natural disasters shatter homes, and migration places individuals and families in vulnerable situations, restoring and maintaining communication is as important as ever. Connection with family helps strengthen the resilience of communities and individuals; and reduces the suffering of those who do not know the fate of their loved ones.

Every day through this service, volunteers are working with individuals and families to re-establish the bonds that so many of us take for granted. It could be helping a wife write a letter to her husband; submitting a search request for a Holocaust survivor wanting to learn the fate of his family; building relationships with a local diaspora community so that when disaster strikes their families abroad, they know they can come to the Red Cross for help; or helping a migrant who hasn't spoken to family in months place a phone call home. Our volunteers do so much to not only reconnect families, but strengthen their local communities by building networks of support.

This Red Cross month, join our effort to reconnect those separated from the ones they love, whether by volunteering with your local Red Cross, donating to our cause, or just promoting these services among your networks. All your support helps separated families across the United States, and the globe, find each other and restore what was lost. Join us today