American Red Cross

This grant was for The American Red Cross, New Jersey Capital Area Chapter. The grant was used to expand the health and safety programs to youth in Mercer County. These programs will help people prepare for and prevent emergencies, which epitomizes the philosophy of the Infinity Foundation.  

The Red Cross will provide an intense skill building community program to youth in Mercer County. The need for this program was recognized through meeting with other community based organizations who portray a high percentage of their clients as socio-economically deprived. Many lack the basic social and communication skills necessary to cope with their environment. These youth are in desperate need of education and training that will establish a foundation to promote and reinforce healthier lifestyles. 

For the past 80 years, the American Red Cross in Mercer County has prepared people to prevent and respond to emergencies through training programs, such as CPR, first aid, water safety, HIV/AIDS education and disaster prevention education, Theses programs, which are age appropriate, begin in elementary school and continue 
through adulthood. One of the most significant roadblocks to expanding these programs is the inability of participating organizations to pay for the materials and the equipment necessary to conduct the training course.  

The American Red Cross will deliver these courses using trained volunteers. The Red Cross will train high school students to teach in lower grades, will train adult instructors for after school programs and will also teach individuals within the organizations to deliver these programs to their constituency. All instructors will receive the same high quality uniform training given to all Red Cross volunteers. The Red Cross will work with schools in Mercer County as well as community based youth agencies to reach a high number of youth with these programs.  

The lack of skill building services for youth is reflected in the number of youth who make inappropriate choices that lead to unhealthy lifestyles. Ultimately, the skills gained in these programs will provide the tools to make informed decisions and select wise choices that positively impact their personal growth and development.