Each year, Red Cross volunteers, board members and staff from every Red Cross chapter in New York State gather at the State Capital in Albany for an annual statewide advocacy day. Through the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors, the Red Cross serves as a strategic partner to New York State in the face of emergencies, providing assistance to more than 18,000 New Yorkers each year. During our annual advocacy day, we relish the opportunity to talk about our work with elected representatives, and continue to strengthen the important partnership between the State and the Red Cross.

This year, our advocates met with more than 60 State Senators and Assembly Members to describe how Red Cross programs and services impact the lives of their constituents, and to encourage them to continue to support our work in New York State. In addition to discussing local opportunities for collaboration, we were proud to share statewide statistics showing the widespread impact we have here in New York.

During the 2017-2018 fiscal year, Red Cross staff and volunteers in New York State:

  • Responded to 3,793 local disasters and provided 8,500 NYS families with immediate financial assistance and other emergency support.
  • Installed 39,472 free smoke alarms and provided lifesaving fire safety education to 14,535 NYS households.
  • Educated 11,770 children in NYS through The Pillowcase Project – an emergency preparedness program tailored to third, fourth and fifth grade students.
  • Assisted 6,472 service members, veterans and military families through the Red Cross Service to the Armed Forces program.
  • Collected more than 261,000 units of lifesaving blood as the primary provider of blood products in 46 NYS counties.

Also this year, for the first time ever, the Red Cross recognized four state legislators who have been dedicated champions and longstanding supporters of the Red Cross in New York State. The 2019 Red Cross Legislators of the Year are: Assemblymember John McDonald, III, of Cohoes; Assemblymember Richard Gottfried, of Manhattan; Assembly Majority Leader Crystal Peoples-Stokes, of Buffalo; and Senator Thomas O’Mara, of Big Flats. We are deeply appreciative of the support these representatives have shown for the work of the Red Cross in their communities and across New York.

Assembly member John McDonald receives the 2019 Red Cross Legislator of the Year award from Red Cross Regional Executive Gary Striar.

Our work in New York State is made possible by the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors. Find your local Red Cross chapter and see how you can get involved at redcross.org!