Red Cross members to raise safety awareness

Red Cross members to raise safety awareness

Young Adult Red Cross president Chelsea Bowser (left) has a meeting with organization adviser Dawn Drahnak.

Nathan Bottiger, Managing Editor

Pitt-Johnstown organizations conduct blood bank donations on a regular basis, but now, some students are moving to start an additional Red Cross relationship.

The Young Adult branch of Johnstown’s Red Cross chapter held its first meeting Oct. 16, which was to gauge initial interest.

They met again for the second time Oct. 25, electing officers. Senior co-founder Chelsea Bowser was elected as president.

Bowser said she has had a lot of previous experience with the Red Cross while she was president of the Kappa Zeta sorority.

Bowser said she has been working on the group’s creation and following paperwork procedures with youth volunteer specialist Anna Drenning.

Bowser said most of the paperwork has been filed, and the Red Cross organization has approved their request. Branch members are waiting to have the registration complete.

She said Drenning is currently on a hiatus, and they will have to wait for her return to become completely legitimate.

Bowser said the organization has already gained a lot of interest, reaching over 30 members with the promise of more. She said future members are from different backgrounds.

“They are people from all different majors and all different clubs.”

Bowser said the main goal for this branch is to raise awareness for people to help others when needed.

“Normal people don’t have the exposure that we have,” she said. “They don’t have the training we have.”

Junior and fellow co-founder Steve Bender said the club has a promising future and looks to gain more members next semester.

“There’s still a lot of interest,” Bender said.

He said most students interested as of now, who haven’t already signed up, are trying to get a feel for what the club is like before making the commitment.

Bender said he uses examples, like recent incidents, to explain the advantages of joining and getting involved.

He said the reason he thinks people join is because many people know someone, who has needed emergency assistance.

Bender said he donates blood frequently, and he plans to be highly involved with the organization.

Bowser said the club members were to partake in their first function as a group last week. They were to attend a mock disaster, which should provide some practice to prepare for helping those in disastrous situations.

Bowser said, once enough members are certified in the various disaster-relief training, the club will be on call in case they are needed.

Bowser said the club is to partake in a few events or functions by the end of the semester, but most of the planning is going toward next semester.

“We have a million ideas for next semester.”

She said she has plans to make sure every member stays involved with the training sessions and fundraising.

Bowser said she has high hopes for the club’s future, and hopes that more members join and that people become more aware of how much they are needed during emergencies.

“I have very high expectations for next semester.”