Despite the hardships the COVID-19 pandemic created, Jacklynn Guerra served with gusto for the Kern & Eastern Sierras Chapter in the past year. She connected with hundreds through our Preparedness Programs through virtual efforts, and supported local and regional disaster responses, blood drives, and much more.
Get to know Jacklynn and how she became involved with AmeriCorps and American Red Cross.
What drew you to the Red Cross?
When I was in High School and in college, I would always donate blood to Red Cross. I so was aware of the blood services that the organization provided to the community. As I got older, I realized that the Red Cross also helped with disaster preparedness. I found this to be very intriguing and wanted to learn more about the organization as a whole.
What is one of your favorite Red Cross moments?
I actually have two Red Cross Moments!
In November of 2020, I was deployed in-person to the Mountain View Fire in Walker, California. During this time, I was able to work with my team member Marshall and we helped clients at the Local Assistance Center. We provided them with various information on the next steps as well as answered some questions that they may have had. The community that we were serving was very small and everyone was extremely welcoming. We were able to connect and establish relationships with the community and the clients. At the end of the deployment, I found it hard to say goodbye to some of them, but I knew that our team had helped them develop a recovery plan that best met their needs. Overall, I am thankful that I was able to assist with a Disaster Relief Operation in person.
For my second memory, both my parents had never donated blood before. They have always wanted to, but have had the opportunity to do so, yet. In February of 2021, we held our first Battle of the Badges in Kern County. My parents signed up and were able to donate blood. When Battle of the Badges returned in July of 2021, they signed up again and my mom was a power red donor. I am extremely proud of them for donating and I know that they are going to continue to donate blood with Red Cross.
What would you tell someone who is interested in getting involved with the Red Cross?
I would tell someone that it is a great organization to volunteer and become involved with. I am so grateful and blessed for the relationships and friendships that I have developed with various members of the Red Cross. The volunteers and staff within the Red Cross and truly amazing people and would do anything for their community and other Red Crossers. I am trying to hold back the tears as I type this, but I am thankful that I have the opportunity to work with volunteers and staff in the Red Cross during my AmeriCorps term.
Congratulations to our 2020-2021 Americorps Disaster Team members! We wanted to thank and recognize our team members for a job well done during quite an extraordinary year! Thank you Jacklynn for your dedication to your community, we wish you the best in your future endeavors!
We are hiring California AmeriCorps Disaster Team members in Bakersfield and Camarillo, CA to begin in September 2021. Did you know that a year of service can help you stand out to schools and future employers? You can gain valuable experience and earn a $10,000 education award by joining the American Red Cross AmeriCorps program. Apply today!