Red Cross seeks local heroes for annual drive
By Becky Barclay
Published in News on February 9, 2006 1:53 PM
Local "heroes" will be on a mission during March to raise $70,000 for the Wayne County chapter of the American Red Cross.
The fourth annual Heroes Campaign starts March 1 with a kickoff luncheon at noon at the chapter house, which is located at 600 N. George St.
The first event raised more than $28,000. There were 42 heroes during the second.
Last year's goal was $60,000 and heroes raised $65,000, Red Cross Director Chuck Waller said.
A hero is anyone who commits to raise at least $1,000. Waller said the donor doesn't have to be an individual. A business, Scout troop, family or any other kind of group can qualify for hero status.
"For anyone who can't raise $1,000, any gift will be accepted," he said. "It takes gifts of all sizes to make this work.
"We had one lady one year who went around asking everybody she knew to give $1 to support the Red Cross. She raised $1,500. It's amazing the efforts that people will go to help their community."
Waller said it takes money to do what the Red Cross chapter does. "This is the fundraising leg of our efforts to make sure that we've got the dollars available to serve Wayne County."
He said the heroes hold various fundraisers of their own to raise the money. These include bake sales, car washes, dress down days.
"The sky is the limit on what they choose to do. We do encourage people to have fun with it."
One part of the Heroes Campaign is Pennies For a Purpose jugs in the local schools. The chapter gives huge water jugs to the schools and lets the students decorate them any way they want. The water bottles are judged and prizes given. It's open to elementary, middle and high school students.
The schools use the jugs to raise money before they are judged.
"We had four schools last year that raised in excess of $1,000 each," Waller said.
The chapter will also hold a yard sale March 3 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and March 4 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the chapter house to benefit the Heroes Campaign.
Donations of items for the sale are being taken now.
Something new during last year's heroes campaign was a 75-mile Ride for the Red, sponsored by the Goldsboro Chapter of the Blue Knights International, a motorcycle group. Heading up the ride was Capt. Glenn Barnes of the Goldsboro Police Department and president of the local Blue Knights Chapter.
This year's Ride for the Red is in the planning stages.
"Red Cross gives heroes to the community day in and day out with folks that have been trained in CPR and first aid, folks that collect blood, folks that show up at 2 in the morning when your house burns down, folks who have pulled a drowning kid from a pool," Waller said. "What we're doing now is asking folks to be heroes for the American Red Cross to help us raise money."
Proceeds stay in Wayne County to be used for services that the Red Cross provides daily.
The Heroes Campaign will conclude with a wrap-luncheon March 31 at noon at the chapter house.
Anyone wanting to be a hero should contact the chapter at 735-7201.
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