Note from #stlredcross: We love our Americorps team here at the Red Cross, and every Friday they will share with all of us, what they are learning, experiencing and how much fun they are having being a part of one of the greatest service organizations in the country.
By Allyson, Preparedness Americorps Member
“I am an AmeriCorps member, and I will get things done.”
Currently, there are nine AmeriCorps members serving at the American Red Cross Greater St. Louis Region. We serve in over 40 counties throughout the region. We have two types of AmeriCorps members: Preparedness and Response.
As a Preparedness AmeriCorps member, I teach preparedness in at-risk communities. We teach preparedness such as Fire Safety to people and kids of all ages. I really enjoy teaching youth because most jobs don’t allow for you to do a “Fire Safety rap” or sing the alphabet to a room full of kids while showing them how to scrape and rub their hands together to get rid of germs.
My 13 months in AmeriCorps has taught me a lot. Let’s just say that AmeriCorps members tend to find themselves in some unique situations. It isn’t every day that you come to work to make a video blog…and the next thing you know you’re talking to a mannequin about how to be prepared. The mannequin named Sandy is talking back to you and has way too many dogs and cats. (If you haven’t seen our National Preparedness Month blogs, I highly suggest you check them out – here, here and here.)
One of the best “aha” moments in AmeriCorps came when I was shopping at a grocery store. I wasn’t wearing anything that showed I was an AmeriCorps member or volunteer at the Red Cross. A lady and her daughter came up to me while I was waiting at the checkout. She asked if I worked at the Red Cross. I said yes with a little suspicion. She said that her daughter recognized me as the “Red Cross lady” that came to her school and taught her about tornadoes.
It made me realize that if this Kindergartener remembered me from coming to her school then she probably remembered “Twister Turtle” and his ways to stay safe in a tornado. The whole reason the Preparedness AmeriCorps members are going into the community is to get out the message about being prepared. It is great when we can see that our work is really helping others. So as AmeriCorps members, we really are getting things done in our community.