CHENANGO COUNTY – Although there is no longer a Chenango County Chapter of the Red Cross, officials at the organization want area residents to know they are providing the same services to the area through the Southern Tier Chapter of the American Red Cross.
The Red Cross transitioned from a single county office to a regional office approach several years ago, but according to Southern Tier Chapter Chief Executive Officer Cynthia Smith Gordineer, many area residents seem to be under the impression that the Red Cross no longer operates in Chenango County, when in reality, the change has allowed the group to provide more services and respond to disasters in a more effective way.
In Chenango County, Gordineer explained, the Red Cross responds to emergencies, holds blood drives, hosts classes, provides military communication, emergency loans for military families and aids those who have exhausted their resources on energy costs.
“Last year, we responded to 23 events in Chenango County, consisting of 26 cases,” Gordineer said. The events consisted of fires and emergencies which forced people from their homes. “We provided shelter, clothing, food, emergency medicines, glasses and help finding permanent housing,” Gordineer said. She explained the role of the Red Cross is to take people from the event to a place where they can begin to rebuild their lives. “We provide immediate response,” she said.