Recovery after a fire starts with a safe place to stay - Generocity Philly


Mar. 8, 2019 1:02 pm

Recovery after a fire starts with a safe place to stay

After a disaster, a short-term recovery center can provide shelter, food, clothing and services. Here's how to support Philadelphia's Red Cross House — plus, how to get a free ticket to its upcoming Red Ball.

A firefighter.

(Photo by Flickr user Daniel Fleming, used via a Creative Commons license)

This is a guest post by American Red Cross Eastern Pennsylvania Region Regional Communications Program Manager Sophie Kluthe.
It’s a cold night in the middle of winter. You’re standing on the sidewalk. The wind swirls around, biting at your face. But you don’t notice anything but the angry orange glow of the fire that’s engulfed your home.

It’s all gone, along with all your possessions. What’s next when everything you own is gone in minutes?

For many people in Philadelphia, the answer is the Red Cross House.

The Red Cross House is especially relevant at the tail end of what has been a busy winter home fire season. We are also just weeks away from Red Ball, the black-tie fundraising gala that helps fund the facility.

The American Red Cross understands that the road to recovery might start with a safe place to spend the night, but the Red Cross House is so much more than a shelter. It’s a short-term recovery center that helps families with a place to stay, food, clothing and recovery services like legal and financial assistance, following a disaster.

In 2018, the Red Cross provided more than 950 people with those services, including a total of nearly 17,000 overnight stays averaging 21 days, and served more than 50,000 meals. Residents at the Red Cross House also have access to counseling, computers and the internet for job and housing searches, plus indoor and outdoor play areas for families with young children.

The Red Cross House is funded exclusively through donations, so the people who stay there never see a bill. Without the Red Cross House, many families left homeless by disaster would go to a homeless shelter, with an average stay longer than six months and no guarantee that family members would stay together.

Your support of Red Ball and Red Cross House helps families recover and rebuild their lives after a disaster. Click here for tickets to the March 30 event.

If you become a Generocity member by Tuesday, March 26, at 11:59 p.m., you will be entered into a drawing for a free ticket (that’s a $225 value) to the Red Ball. Four names will be chosen at random — and existing members can get in on the action as well. If you’re an existing member who wants to be included in our this promotion, please email Jeanette Lloyd at by March 26.

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