It was just after lunch when Megin Hughes pulled into her local Red Cross office. She and a team of other volunteers were going to spend the afternoon installing free smoke alarms in homes in a nearby neighborhood.
It had only been a couple weeks since a fire had burned through a local apartment complex, displacing multiple families that relied on Red Cross disaster assistance. Now the preparedness volunteers were going door to door to install smoke alarms and empower families to make smart decisions in times of emergency.
“I enjoy interacting with clients and making my community prepared,” said Megin, “Installing smoke alarms in houses is a great service the Red Cross is providing. Not only does the Red Cross replace batteries and smoke alarms, but with the help of AmeriCorps they provide an evacuation plan for the family. I am grateful that I can be a part of an organization like the Red Cross, and provide service to the community I represent.”
Megin and the team headed into the warehouse and did a quick inventory. They grabbed their smoke alarms, info sheets, batteries, drills, and vests and headed out.
When the team reached the first home, Megin knocked on the door. She explained to the homeowner that they were with the Red Cross and providing a free service to the community. Once the resident understood, he eagerly invited them in. He didn’t have a working smoke alarm and was grateful for their program.
Megin and the resident walked through the home and determined the best place to put the alarm. While Megin finished the installation, another team member worked with the family to teach them best practices for maintaining the alarm and mapped out what escape routes to take in the event of a fire.
“I was drawn to the Red Cross because I saw them provide assistance during the Earthquake in Northridge many years ago,” said Megin, “Ever since then, the image of Red Cross has been placed in my head and I want to be part of an organization that provides assistance to those in need.”
Megin and the team shook hands with the resident and moved on to the next home.
Megin Hughes is part of the more than 90% volunteer workforce that provides humanitarian service in the Central California Region. The Red Cross thanks and honors these selfless and compassionate every day heroes during National Volunteer Week, April 12 – 18. Click here to learn more about the “Day in the Life of a Volunteer” series.