In 2015, a San Juan Capistrano mother and her two daughters, ages two and three, tragically perished in a home fire. When the Red Cross visited the area just a few short weeks later to install free smoke alarms and provide fire safety information to residents, we had a chance to talk with the grandmother of the family, Tracy. She was so thankful that Red Cross was there in her community and told us that she thought just one working smoke alarm could have saved the lives of her daughter and grandchildren.
The Home Fire Campaign is potentially life-saving for the thousands of Orange County residents who go to sleep each night without a reliable warning system in place. The campaign was launched in 2014 with the goal of reducing home fire deaths and injuries by 25 percent over the next five years. Nationwide, more than 110 lives have been saved by smoke alarms installed by the Red Cross and our partners.
Last year, our region responded to nearly 500 local disasters, the vast majority of which were home fires. During the same timeframe, we installed over 3,800 smoke alarms, helped 960 families complete emergency plans, and educated over 4,000 residents on the importance of fire safety and disaster preparedness. We simply could not have this level of impact without the support of volunteers, local partners and the generosity of our donors.
That’s where the Board of Directors of the American Red Cross Serving Orange County come in. Once again this year, the Board is participating in the Festival of Children Foundation’s Carousel of Possible Dreams campaign at Disneyland Resort. This opportunity will help raise funds to accomplish the possible dream of reducing home fire deaths and injuries in Orange County. “This year’s campaign focuses on donations to be used for residential smoke alarm installations,” explains Bill Blanning, Orange County Chapter Board Member and Carousel Captain. “It’s an opportunity to prevent a disaster, rather than responding to one, and will have a direct impact on our mission to save lives.”
The Carousel of Possible Dreams Campaign culminates on November 9, 2016. Five Board Members will ride the King Arthur Carousel 50 times round and round as calls are made to donors to surpass our goal of raising $25,000 for this critical program. “It is rewarding to see your dollars at work in the community and knowing you are making it safer and saving lives by doing so,” says David Engwall, also an Orange County Chapter Board Member. For more information or to donate to the Carousel of Possible Dreams, please visit: http://www.festivalofchildren.org/goto/OC_Red_Cross