“When I joined the Red Cross and saw how much good this organization does, I thought, ‘This makes sense’ and I am glad to be a part of it.”
Home fires are not new to Darlene Huntinghouse. As a retired firefighter, she helped battle numerous fires in the Chicagoland area during her career. Now, she helps the people who have been affected by them, as a disaster volunteer for the American Red Cross in the South Central Illinois chapter of the Illinois region.
“When we would have big fires there, the Red Cross canteen would come out. I was amazed by that and thought, ‘They are here for us?’ I thought, ‘When I retire, I’m going to look into helping out,’ because it just amazed me, and still does,” Darlene said.
Darlene joined the team as a volunteer in September 2022 and enjoys having the opportunity to help the people she meets.
“I’ve been on the other side of it, going to put out a fire,” she said. “Now, I see how devastating it is to people. They’ve lost everything, and I just see the need to offer people something.”
In addition to responding to disasters, Darlene recently helped organize volunteer recruitment events scheduled for April 5-6 in the Marion, Illinois area, in an effort to bring new volunteers on board. Please click the link to sign up for these events. She also has recruited several new volunteers from her personal network.
We are grateful for Darlene’s dedicated efforts as a Red Crosser! Visit redcross.org/volunteer to join Darlene on the volunteer team.
Written by Illinois Region Communications Manager Brian Williamsen