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Grainger is the national founding sponsor of the program, “Ready When the Time Comes,” which will roll out on 16 Red Cross chapters over the next two years. The initial eight metropolitan communities include Baltimore; Houston; Kansas City, Mo.; Los Angeles; New York; Orange County, Calif,; San Francisco; and St. Louis.
The American Red Cross was presented with a $1 million donation from Richard L. Keyser, chairman and CEO of Grainger. Funds from the donation will be distributed to chapter in these cities in the form of grants.
The program was pioneered by the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago, and has support in Chicago from 17 corporations and a force of 1,100 volunteers. Grainger and the Red Cross have trained more than 180 new Grainger volunteers in Chicago and Denver; the program is also underway in Florida.
Through the “Ready When the Time Comes” program, local Red Cross chapters collaborate with businesses in their areas to recruit and train corporate employees as volunteers. When a disaster strikes, the Red Cross can quickly mobilize this network of well-trained volunteers.