Red Cross kicks off Hero Campaign - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Red Cross kicks off Hero Campaign

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Valdosta - When a family's home is destroyed by fire, they're often left with no food or clothing, and no place to go. "All of a sudden, they're sitting on the curb because they've lost everything they own," said Penelope White, Red Cross Director.

That's when the American Red Cross steps in, and gives them the resources they need to start over. "In the last year, we assisted 54 families, that was over 200 people who need our help," said White.

Providing those services takes a lot of money. That's why the Valdosta Chapter of the American Red Cross is kicking off the "Hero" campaign. "It's a short campaign, $50,000 in 30 days," said Mayor John Fretti, Campaign Chair.

Anyone can be a hero. "It can be a business, an organization, an individual, they can sit at a gas station and collect tips if they want to but anyway possible to raise $1,000 and they will be a hero," said Fretti.

The money will help boost the local chapter's struggling budget, which was nearly wiped out by last year's hurricanes. "The Valdosta Red Cross opened 12 shelters, that took a chunk of money to be able to feed people in those shelters," said White.

"Our supplies have been depleted dramatically and we need to bring those back up to speed," said Fretti.

All of the money raised in the campaign will stay in the four counties the Valdosta chapter serves, and help hundreds of disaster victims rebuild their lives.

posted by ashley.harper@walb.com