Red Cross extends 'Quality of Life' program to military personnel

From Staff Reports

   The American Red Cross Chapters in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia are working in cooperation with area Food City Stores to enable the public to support our military service members serving overseas as a part of the American National Red Cross Quality of Life Program.
   For security reasons of the military the program requires that only items selected and packed by the Red Cross may be mailed.
   From March 3 through March 15 individuals who wish to may purchase special kits that will be sent to the military service members. These kits are available only at Food City stores throughout the area. There are two options for purchase:
   * The "Personal Care Kit" package includes toothpaste, "wet ones", and personal care items that are requested by service members. The items are appropriate for both men and women. The cost is $10.
   * The "Snack Kit" package includes candy, crackers, soup mix, and numerous items that will be suitable for the weather. The cost is $15.
   Customers can have the kits scanned with their groceries, leave them at the store and they will be packed by the Red Cross Chapters and sent to service member locations. Weyerhaeuser is donating shipping cartons and the postage will be paid by various community groups.
   The project comes as a joint effort by Food City and the Red Cross units of Carter and Greene counties, Johnson City-Washington County, Kingsport-Hawkins County and the Mountain Empire Chapter.
   The Red Cross has also made available to the public a toll-free hot line that can be used in addition to the local chapters to access information about disaster safety and preparedness information.
   Red Cross volunteers answering the hot line will have answers to questions about sheltering-in-place, disaster supplies, school and business preparedness, and general information about disaster preparedness. The public is asking for guidance on what to do right now, and the Red Cross has information they need -- just a phone call away.
   Callers are urged to call 1-866-GET INFO; the call center will be open from 8 a.m. until midnight, seven days a week. Callers may also reach their local Red Cross Chapter -- in Carter County the office number is 542-2833 -- and is open for information between 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. weekdays. The number is available for emergencies 24 hours a day.
   Informational brochures are also available at the Red Cross Office at 116 Holston Avenue and at the Elizabethton Public Library.
   For additional information or questions, contact Kim Fisk at 542-2833.