ATLANTA,  July 12, 2012 — Imagine being burned while cooking a family meal. As the pain ensues and panic sets in, several questions might come to mind: 

Do I bandage the burn or leave it uncovered? Should I wash the wound and apply antiseptic or should I use water alone? Should I be alert for signs of infection and when do I call 9-1-1? 

To provide quick solutions to these and other safety questions, the Red Cross recently launched its official first aid app, putting free and simple lifesaving information right in the hands of smart phone users. 

This app is the first in a series to be created by the American Red Cross, the nation’s leader in first aid and emergency preparedness information. It’s also the only first aid app created or endorsed by the American Red Cross for use on both the Android and iPhone platforms. It gives instant access to information on how to handle the most common first aid situations, and includes videos and interactive quizzes. Users who take quizzes can earn badges they can share with friends through social media to show off their lifesaving knowledge.

The app takes critical first aid information normally stored on bookshelves and in pamphlets and places it at the fingertips of tens of millions of individuals – which will save lives. The Red Cross app includes trusted Red Cross disaster preparedness information for a number of common situations. 

“The penetration of personal smart phone ownership in the U.S. has recently risen above 60 percent and will likely soon reach the level of traditional wire line phones,” said Jack McMaster, president, Preparedness and Health and Safety Services at the Red Cross. “The broad availability of this platform opens a new opportunity for us to create custom apps, free of charge, tailored to specific emergencies confronting individuals no matter where they are.” 

“The American Red Cross First Aid app is a free and easy way to get lifesaving first aid instruction and disaster preparedness information anytime, anywhere,” said Red Cross Scientific Advisory Council chair Dr. David Markenson. “Everyone should load this onto their smart phone as an important first step in learning what to do for medical emergencies and in creating a family preparedness plan.” 

App features include: 

  • Simple step-by-step instructions for everyday first aid scenarios;
  • Prioritized steps to take during an emergency, with 9-1-1 call button;
  • Sharable badges to be unlocked through interactive quizzes;
  • Videos and animations to make learning first aid fun and easy;
  • Safety and preparedness tips for a range of conditions including severe winter weather, hurricanes, earthquakes and tornadoes;
  • Preloaded content that gives instant access to all safety information at any time.
  • The app is free and available for iPhone and Android users. Find the app in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android by searching for American Red Cross. 

The new app builds on the American Red Cross legacy of teaching first aid and lifesaving skills to people across the country. An average of more than 9 million people a year receive Red Cross training in first aid, water safety and other skills that help save lives.

Downloading the app is not a substitute for training. To learn more about American Red Cross first aid or register for a course, visit 

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies more than 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at


Atlanta Red Cross Celebrates National Volunteer Week (April 15-21) and Beyond

National Volunteer Week (April 15-21) may be over, but our gratitude and admiration for Red Cross volunteers is everlasting.We’ll continue our video tributes to Red Cross volunteers through the end of April.
Question: Which Atlanta Red Cross volunteer was a state probation officer for 30+ years? Watch this video to find out 

Atlanta Red Cross Celebrates National Volunteer Week, April

Phyllis Thomas, Atlanta Red Cross volunteer, shares her perspective on the importance of volunteering. Phyllis is one of the many volunteers that the Red Cross is celebrating during National Volunteer Week, April 15-21. For information on becoming a Red Cross volunteer go to or call the volunteer hotline number at 404-870-4425

The Atlanta Red Cross Celebrates National Volunteer Week, April 15-21

Terri Patterson, Atlanta Red Cross volunteer, delves into her thoughts on the importance of volunteering. Terri is one the many volunteers that the Red Cross is celebrating during National Volunteer Week, April 15-21. For information on becoming a Red Cross volunteer, go to or call the volunteer hotline number at 404-870-4425.

The Atlanta Red Cross Celebrates National Volunteer Week, April 15-21

Imagine getting a call at 3 AM from a person who very calmly and coolly tells you that a large number of apartment dwellers have been displaced by smoke and fire. Then imagine stumbling out of  bed, jumping into your car and travelling to the scene of the disaster, where you are met by several of the displaced who are frantically seeking assistance.  Now imagine that you see a car pull up with a driver who, like you, is wearing a Red Cross vest. That person is then followed by a procession of others, all wearing that familiar Red symbol of hope and all committed to helping the newly homeless.  Now imagine your relief as what was once a chaotic and seemingly hopeless situation now transitions into a scene of serenity.  And though you don’t utter a word, the slight smile on your face proclaims that  “Red Cross volunteers have arrived and that everything will be alright.”  Later that day, imagine sitting in front of your TV set and seeing the story of the fire that you responded to earlier. Then imagine that after the reporter recounts the tragic loss of property and piece of mind, she ends her report with an obvious air of hope and optimism when she says  that “all  of  the displaced residents are being assisted by the American Red Cross.” 

This real-life drama is played out an average of  3-4 times a day here in Atlanta  and the plot and actors are invariably the same— disaster strikes, our friends and neighbors are displaced and Red Cross volunteers save the day. While we all know that Red Crossers are special and that their committment to mission is exceptional it never hurts to remember that as volunteerism is at the core of a thriving community so are Red Cross volunteers the foundation of the greatest humanitarian force on the planet, whether they are responding to disasters, teaching CPR, providing emotional support to disaster-stricken families coordinating blood drives or providing administrative support in Red Cross offices.

While Webster defines a volunteer as one who enters into or offers himself for a service of his own free will, this writer  defines a volunteer as the quintessential Red Crosser, ignoring his or her own needs and comfort, while bringing hope and reassurance to his fellow-man.

So in celebration of National Volunteer Week (April 15-21)  we’re sending heartfelt thanks to all Red Cross Atlanta Red Cross volunteers, and indeed to Red Cross volunteers throughout Georgia, this great country and around the world–

Thank you for being unselfish.

Thank you for being compassionate.                                                             

Thank you for being committed.   

Thank you for providing care to the least of us.

Thank you for your sacrifice.

Thank you for being a Red Cross volunteer.  

To find out how you can volunteer go to or call the Atlanta Red Cross volunteer hotline at (404) 870-4425.