Adopt an ARK
The American Red Cross Silicon Valley Chapter responds to nearly 100 local disasters per year and provides for almost 150 families with emergency housing, food, and emotional support. In order to assist those in need, we currently manage 44 ARKs that provide for nearly 2 million residents around Santa Clara County. These ARKs are containers holding useful supplies, such as blankets, cots, water, and medical kits, to set up disaster shelters. California is a region prone to natural and domestic disasters, including earthquakes, landslides, floods, and fires. In fact, the chapter responds to 2 to 3 house fires every week. With a national survey revealing that only 7 percent of Americans are prepared for disasters, it is evident that Americans would be undersupplied and deprived of necessities in the case of an earthquake, fire, or landslide. With the September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance 10th Anniversary Challenge, we would be able to improve our relief efforts in community-related disasters by replenishing our ARKs’ supplies. We anticipate 40 volunteers to participate in organization of the ARKs. We train new volunteers each year in shelter operations and disaster-relief.
During 9/11, responders from a myriad of organizations lent their aid and time to the victims of the attack. The Adopt an ARK event commemorates those who responded to the disaster on that day. ARKs will be able to provide the necessary items for a shelter that will ensure the survival of civilians in case of an emergency such as the 9/11 attacks. This will better prepare us so that we will never be caught off-guard in such a situation ever again.
Our local Youth Disaster Action Team (YDAT) consists of youth volunteers who utilize the ARKs to assist families and individuals who have gone through lost and disasters. With their compassion, our youth volunteers participate in the relief effort while caring for people who have been evacuated from their homes. By responding to disasters, YDAT assists in the comfort and recovery of disaster victims by providing them food, water, clothing, and first aid kits.
To promote the Day of Service and Remembrance, we will utilize our Youth Services websites, distribute flyers throughout the community, and publish the event in our bi-monthly Red Cross Clubs Newsletters.
The American Red Cross Silicon Valley Chapter keeps a database of volunteer events and participants. AmeriCorps and the Youth Services staff will work together to maintain this database over time.