WJ club allows teens to volunteer for Red Cross

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Photo courtesy of Maya Stantchev

Members of the Red Cross club post about their club event on Instagram. The newfound Red Cross club partakes in many service activities to benefit the Red Cross organization.

The Red Cross Club is new this year and an extension of the National Capital and Greater Chesapeake region. The club partakes in the mission and the goals of the Red Cross through service-based activities.

President junior Maya Stantchev became interested in the Red Cross late sophomore year while stuck in quarantine. At first, she was interested in volunteering by herself but wasn’t able to due to restrictions for teens because of Covid.

“Then I heard that I could start a club at the school under direct guidance from the organization,” Stantchev said.

Stantchev said it helped her start something on her own which turned out to be quite intimidating in the beginning.

Projects the club will be working on are discussing disaster preparedness initiatives, creating safety presentations fundraisers and blood drives. The club will also be writing letters to veterans, organizing food/supply drives and putting on bake sales to raise money for different causes. A recent event was the Chipotle Dine Out on Oct.28, Stantchev said they were really excited about it.

During the month of September, the Red Cross Club partnered with Poolesville, Northwest and Wootton High School to run a social media awareness week about disaster preparedness. Also, they have taken part in the diversity pledge and sharing stories of BIPOC who played vital roles in creating the public health system we know today.

“One thing that makes us stand out is our events and all the effort we put into the club so everyone can enjoy it and feel comfortable being an active member of the Red Cross,” Vice President junior Farah Aliabadi said.‘We tend to ask for feedback so we can plan for the most fun and effective way to have more people involved.”

The Red Cross Club has done massive social media outreach to recruit new members.

“Hopefully that will continue to spread and if we’re able to go back in person you can expect posters and announcements along with other forms of recruitment,” committee lead junior Marissa Krantz said.

The Red Cross club also presents many perks for members, like SSL hours for every meeting and event members participate in along with a chance to get a letter of recommendation for colleges. Members are also rewarded by being a part of something that works to provide the best care for the world.

“The feeling that you are a part of something larger that is helping repair the world and make it easier for others is so rewarding and I love that,” Krantz said.

Both Krantz and Aliabadi said that learning about leadership communication skills and hearing from different points of view over the past few months will prepare them for their careers.

“My favorite part of being an officer has definitely been setting up events and working with other officials to make them happen. Maya, Marrissa, Rowan and Clara, we’re all just really good friends and have fun doing it,” Aliabadi said.

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