This story was written by Red Cross worker Janice Osborne.
The Mississippi Association of Broadcasters, one of the nation’s leading state broadcast associations, asked all of their stations to sign-on to a Media Day for the American Red Cross. At least 75 stations agreed to participate in the May 12 event to focus on the efforts of the Red Cross in responding to the double-dose of storms the state received. Donations to the American Reed Cross Disaster Relief Fund were encouraged.
From Adams County to Lee County, television and radio stations across the state praised the work of the American Red Cross following the recent tornadoes and asked listeners to give what they could to the relief fund.
“We are very grateful to the Mississippi Association of Broadcasters for partnering with the Red Cross in this fundraising effort,” said Larry Bartrem, disaster fundraising officer and coordinator of the project. “The media have been extremely supportive in getting critical Red Cross information out to the public before, during and after the recent tornadoes.”
In addition to drive-bys, collections and roadblocks, listeners were told they could donate by calling 1-800-REDCROSS, or visit http://www.redcross.org, or text REDCROSS to 90999 to make an immediate $10 contribution.
At Clear Channel Communications in Jackson, Miss., four radio stations plugged the fundraising effort throughout the day and interviewed local Red Cross public affairs representatives about the relief efforts, how donated dollars are spent, and how people can get involved at the local level.
At the Pine Belt Chapter of the American Red Cross, Executive Director Peggy Owens-Mansfield worked with area media to collect donations at the Sawmill Square Mall in Laurel, Miss. Red Cross Executive Director Patty Tucker of the Northeast Mississippi Chapter worked closely with local television station WCBI.
In Jackson, ABC- and NBC-affiliated television stations interviewed Robert Lee Woods, a Yazoo City resident who was severely injured by a tornado while alerting neighbors.
In speaking with WLBT television, 25-year-old Woods, who is recuperating at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, praised the Red Cross for helping him and his family. “The Red Cross did a good job. They gave me a card and helped me get new clothes and met my essential needs. They helped me pretty good.”