CrossLink - Canadian Red Cross



CrossLink - Canadian Red Cross
Your link to what’s happening at the Canadian Red Cross, Toronto Region
Annual Meeting Update
Red Cross Welcomes Summer Interns
Canadian Red Cross
Summer/Fall 2006
Hello From Bob and Norbert
Norbert Woo
Region Council President
Bob English
Director,Regional Operations
pring is a time for growth and renewal,and
the spring of 2006 was no exception. We said a
sad farewell to Linda Hoffman,our region
council president,as she stepped down from
her position. Linda not only served as
Toronto's president,but also provided valuable
counsel to National and Zone offices. We
extend a sincere thank you to Linda for her
significant contribution to the Red Cross.
We are pleased to welcome Norbert Woo to the
role of president. Norbert brings valuable
experience to the position as a skilled business
leader in addition to having served on Toronto
Council and several Red Cross committees.
alerts and extreme alerts declared by the City
of Toronto. These disaster responders have also
worked at Union Station and Pearson
International Airport to greet and assist
Canadians who were evacuated from Lebanon
when conflict erupted there several weeks ago
and we are grateful for the tireless efforts of
those involved.
Thank you once again to our many dedicated
volunteers and generous donors. It is only
with your support that we are able to continue
to improve the lives of vulnerable people in
our community.
This year's Family Campaign was an
outstanding success. The annual event
engages staff and volunteers in supporting the
organization through a financial contribution.
Bob English
The Toronto Region Family Campaign was
Director,Regional Operations
incredibly successful with 100 per cent
participation by staff. Thank you to all and
The summer months have been very active for
Red Cross disaster management volunteers
and staff who have responded to several heat
Norbert Woo
Region Council President
Canadian Red Cross
Summer Student Spotlight
Simon Davis
Each summer, the Red Cross welcomes students who want to use their vacation time to gain work
experience and make a difference in people's lives. Simon Davis has been a welcome addition to the First
Contact program and he wrote this article about his experience.
On May 28, I entered the Canadian Red Cross Toronto
Region offices at Yonge and St. Clair for the first time. After
being interviewed, I was hired as a summer student
through a Human Resources Development Canada (HRDC)
grant. Almost immediately, I found myself immersed in a
world of people who are hurting, but also among a group of
dedicated and enthusiastic Canadian Red Cross staff and
volunteers. My first of many experiences was with the
Canadian Red Cross appeal for Indonesia following the
devastating earthquake. I also experienced both horrible and amazing stories from refugees
in the First Contact program where I spent most of my days. As I met refugee claimants, I
realized just how truly blessed I am.
I am honoured to have spent my summer participating in the great work of the Red Cross.
Even the smallest job at the Red Cross serves others in ways that benefit the causes of justice
and equality. It is also the tireless efforts of Canadian Red Cross staff, volunteers and
supporters that make the Red Cross what it is, a leading humanitarian organization!
- Simon Davis
Toronto Region Thanks Our Summer Students
Kentish Appadoo
Jinesh Bhatt
Chandler Black
Elizabeth Chan
Kumaran Chanthrakumar
Simon Davis
Abreheit Gebretsadik
Hussain Gilani
Martin Kozikowski
Danielle Larsen
Lawanya Mahesh
Courtney Mann
Kyung Min Choi
Sharankumar Nadarajah
Balaranjan Pragatheesh
Preveen Ravichandran
Anusha Rathakrishnan
Matty Rivera
Kevish Sanasy
Suniti Santosh
Shejan Shafique
Waleed Sharif
Adeeb Sheikh
Marlene Smith
Riyesh Uppel
Gobish Uthralingkam
Hannah Karolak-White
Kelvin Yeung
Jessica Yu
Rebecca Zhang
Louis Zhou
Canadian Red Cross
Red Cross Disaster Management - Ready When You Need Us
The Heat Is On!
Although most Torontonians look forward to the warmer summer months, the season
typically brings with it extreme heat and humidity, which can be dangerous - even
deadly. Days of oppressive heat and humidity prompt the City of Toronto to declare a
heat alert or extreme heat alert, and that is when Red Cross disaster management
volunteers and staff leap to action.
Red Cross volunteers deliver
water to those most affected
by the extreme weather,
including seniors, the
homeless and under-housed.
Volunteers also staff a heat
information line to provide
residents with tips on staying
safe and healthy in hot
weather. When an extreme
heat alert is declared, the City of Toronto designates four cooling centres, which are
staffed by Red Cross volunteers. The cooling centres provide an air-conditioned escape
from the heat, as well as medical attention if required.
Substantial resources are required to
run this operation. Disaster
management volunteers are often
needed at a moment's notice and
they contribute many hours ensuring
the vulnerable do not become victims
of heat-related illness. If you are
interested in participating in this and
other disaster preparedness and
response activities, call 416-480-2500
for more information.
Fundraising Updates
Red Cross Family Campaign 2006
By Sarah Legault, Manager, Fund Development
say no to a vulnerable person in
there is simply not
enough assistance available for everyone? The
Red Cross is able to provide help to everyone in
need of our services throughout Toronto. This
continued assistance is only possible thanks to
the commitment and generosity of our donors.
One of our most vital sources of funding is
from our staff and volunteers. Dedicated Red
Crossers give not only of their time, but also of
their hard-earned money in order to improve
the lives of people in our community. Always
generous in times of international crises, our staff and volunteers are also committed to
supporting the ongoing domestic programs of the Red Cross by giving on an annual basis
through our Family Campaign.
This year's campaign, "Family Garden – Plant a Seed for Humanity," ran throughout April.
The 2006 Family Campaign was the most successful in the history of the Toronto Region.
With 100 per cent participation from staff, the 2006 campaign exemplifies the commitment
of those involved with the Red Cross and the dedication with which they support the work of
the organization. In addition to the valuable financial support, the campaign provided the
opportunity to come
together to celebrate
A word of thanks to the following generous supporters:
our successes with pot
lucks, barbecues and
■ The Bank of Montreal, Fountain of Hope
ice cream afternoons. I
■ The United Way of Greater Toronto
guess you can say that
■ Carswell
the Toronto Region is
truly in full bloom!
■ Marlborough Stirling
■ Employees of Sabre Holdings
Many Thanks!
■ The Lillian and Don Wright Foundation
- Sarah Legault
Canadian Red Cross
Annual Meeting
Toronto Region 13th Annual Meeting
May 8, 2006
Volunteers and staff took care of business and enjoyed a fabulous evening together at
the Annual Meeting on World Red Cross Day, May 8.
We said goodbye to outgoing Region Council President Linda Hoffman, and welcomed
our new president, Norbert Woo, elected unanimously.
We heard from Sioban Kennedy, a
disaster management volunteer who
gave an inspiring account of her
experiences assisting the American Red
Cross with relief efforts following
Hurricane Katrina last year. We also
enjoyed a performance from two Ottawa
teen singer-songwriters, Breanne
Breanne Lawrenson and Braiden Turner perform
Lawrenson and Braiden Turner, whose song
at the Annual Meeting.
"Black and Purple" recalls their memories of
being bullied. Some of the proceeds from the sale of the
song will support the Red Cross RespectED program.
We also congratulated Audrey Wilson who has been
volunteering with the Canadian Red Cross for 50 years!
Audrey's friend and co-volunteer Marion Gamester
gave a touching account of Audrey's commitment,
and presented her with a beautiful bouquet of
roses as thanks.
Audrey Wilson was recognized for
50 years of voluntary service.
Thank you to Shewana Sheikh, Lucille Dent and
Ada Ng, for planning another great Annual Meeting!
See you all next year!
Canadian Red Cross
Street Relief Update
Summer BBQ for Street Relief Team and Clients
The Red Cross's Street Relief team in Toronto provides hot
meals, snacks and access to basic needs for our city's homeless
and under-housed.
On June 28, the Street Relief program teamed up with Our
Lady of Lourdes Church and The Toronto Drop-In Network to
host a barbecue for clients and to launch a new campaign
"Drop-ins build strong neighbourhoods." All food was
donated by Our Lady of Lourdes Church and all campaign
material was covered by the Toronto Drop-In Network.
Volunteers from the Street Relief program and Our Lady of
Lourdes Church served over 300 clients as well as many
community residents who also attended. The barbecue was a
tremendous success and demonstrated all that can be accomplished when working together with
community partners.
Reflecting on Summer Experience
Anusha Rathakrishnan spent this summer as an intern at the Canadian Red Cross, Toronto Region. Here is her
perspective on her work with the Red Cross's Street Relief Program.
y experience as an outreach and advocacy worker for the Mobile Food Bank and the Street
Relief program was an eye opener. I provided referrals and information to clients regarding resources
offered in the GTA. I worked with people from different backgrounds and personal experiences, and
was given the opportunity to listen to their stories. Very quickly I learned these individuals have
been able to overcome difficult obstacles that have made them stronger. As an advocacy worker, I
discovered that listening to these individuals and sympathising with their struggles allowed me to
provide information and resources offered by the Red Cross to help improve their situation.
My experience at both the Yonge and Leslie Street offices has been wonderful. Everyone has been
extremely supportive and has accepted me into the 'Red Cross Family' with open arms. The help
offered by Red Cross staff and volunteers is very important. Overall, my experience as an outreach
and advocacy worker for the Mobile Food Bank and the Street Relief program has been outstanding
because I was able to make a difference in the lives of people who live in this city.
- Anusha Rathakrishnan
If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, please contact the Red Cross, Toronto
Region at 416-480-2500 or
First Aid Update
Tim To The Rescue!
TCrossim Steele
is a familiar face around the Red
in Toronto. He is the Chair of the
Disaster Management Committee and gives
countless hours of his time. All volunteers
and staff at the Red Cross are trained to
administer first aid, and fortunately, Tim
remembered what he knew in time to save a
life this past February.
Tim saw his neighbour collapse in his
driveway across the street. The 75-year-old
neighbour has a history of heart problems, so
Tim thought he may have had a heart attack.
Tim assessed the man's vital signs and began
performing chest compressions, while a
Program Coordinator, First Aid Raj Babra presents
young girl called 911. Tim continued until
Tim Steele with Red Cross Rescuer Award.
paramedics arrived who then took over.
Paramedics determined the man was choking on a candy. Tim's quick action helped
dislodge it from his throat, and Tim's neighbour was able to start breathing again.
After several days, the neighbour was released from the hospital and was at home
recuperating. Tim was delighted to see him sitting in his favourite chair, smiling and happy
to be home. Congratulations Tim, for applying your first aid skills and saving a life!
Fast Fact:
You are most likely to use your first aid
skills on someone you know! Ensure
your training is current. For more
information about CPR training please call
416-480-2500 or email
[email protected]
Canadian Red Cross
Dates to Remember
Saturday, September 9 World First Aid Day
October 8 - 14
October 3 - 27
Fire Prevention Week
United Way Campaign
November is CPR Month
Canadian Red Cross
1623 Yonge Street
Toronto, ON M4T 2A1
Tel: (416) 480-2500 Fax: (416) 480-2777
Bridget Brown
Contributing Editors
Tanya Elliott
Leianne Pereira
Graphics and Layout
Sandra Cabral
Simon Davis
Sarah Legault
Anusha Rathakrishnan
The programs of the Canadian Red Cross are made possible by the voluntary services of the Canadian
use of the Canadian Red Cross and for the medical units of armed forces by the Geneva Conventions
National Library of Canada 502476D
Charitable Number 0017780-11
(c) 2006 Canadian Red Cross
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