When disaster strikes, time makes all the difference. Time means preparation. Just as critical as lead times are to those seeking shelter from a dangerous storm, it’s just as vital to the American Red Cross to have supplies at the ready to ensure immediate response to anyone impacted by disaster.
This year, Meijer contributed $575,000 to the American Red Cross of West Michigan’s Annual Disaster Giving Program (ADGP), which is a program that enables the Red Cross to be prepared if – and when – disaster strikes.
The funds are used to purchase basic necessities like toothpaste and deodorant for victims, train volunteers, and fill the gas tanks of Red Cross emergency response vehicles so volunteers don’t need to waste time when a need arises.
In addition to the large annual contribution, Meijer gave another $500,000 to three nonprofit organizations that coordinated a variety of relief efforts related to the Flint water crisis, including:
- $250,000 to the Flint Child Health and Development Fund, which is a partnership between the United Way of Genesee County, Community Foundation of Greater Flint, Hurley Children’s Hospital and the Great Flint Health Coalition;
- $125,000 to the United Way of Genesee County’s Flint Water Fund, which was set up for the purchase of filters, bottled water, emergency support services and prevention efforts; and
- $125,000 to the American Red Cross, which is coordinating relief efforts in Flint and is operating the Volunteer Reception Center for people to help with the distribution of water, water filters, replacement cartridges and water testing kits.
Meijer also gave $25,000 to support American Red Cross efforts after the Louisiana flood, $10,000 after Hurricane Matthew, and two pallets of water after a tornado hit Grand Rapids in August 2016.
The Meijer contribution to American Red Cross makes a big impact on the community:
- $15 – the cost to train one Disaster Action Team volunteer.
- $150 – the cost to deploy one Disaster Action Team volunteer for one day.
- 30 – the number of hours disaster volunteers go through on average before they’re eligible for deployment.
- $2.50 – the cost of one comfort kit that includes deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, facial tissues, wash cloth, shampoo, liquid soap, lotion, comb, razor and shaving cream.