Are you a motorcycle enthusiast? If so, you might be interested in a raffle to benefit our local chapter of the American Red Cross. A Saxon Warlord Motorcycle, provided by High Performance Custom Cycles in Reno, is going to be given away on Sept. 22 during the Street Vibrations Celebration in Reno.
Tickets are $100 each and there will only be 500 tickets sold, which translates into pretty good odds for winning. You can see a picture and read the description for the bike by visiting www.nevada.redcross.org.
You can buy tickets over the phone using your Visa or MasterCard by calling the Northern Nevada Chapter office at (775) 856-1000 or in person at the office which is located at 1190 Corporate Blvd. in Reno (off Mill Street). The drawing will be held at Renegade's Classics in Reno but you don't have to be present to win.
Do you have a family evacuation or disaster plan in effect? They really do work. Last month a duplex in the Ranchos caught fire in the middle of the night and everyone got out due to their preparedness. We are talking a total of six children and even the 3-year-old followed the instructions at 3 a.m. Due to these two families' self-education and planning, they all got out safely and before the fire department arrived. Pretty remarkable, don't you agree? Possessions can easily be replaced but human life is precious.
Why not take the time to plan and practice what to do in the case of a house fire so each of you can escape? Remember it only takes a couple of minutes for the smoke to become toxic so quick action is absolutely necessary and practicing once a month will make a potential evacuation go smoothly and without panic. More information on making your family evacuation plan can be found on the Nevada chapter of the Red Cross Web site.
There has been some confusion regarding donations and evacuations in light of recent fires. The local Red Cross chapters do not receive money from the National Red Cross to help with local disasters such as home or apartment fires or floods. Our own Northern Nevada Chapter, which covers all of Nevada with the exception of Clark County, spends about a million dollars each year on assistance to those affected by a disaster. The account for local disaster assistance should be at the $2 million mark for our growing population.
We raise the money through a variety of fundraisers and are fortunate to also receive local donations. Did you know that you can send in money that is earmarked for the local disaster fund that will stay locally to help your neighbors?
Why do we ask for cash instead of merchandise? The assistance we provide needs to be uniform to all the people. With cash we can give a specific amount, based on the number in the family as well as other factors, and the clients can then purchase what they need since each situation is different. This provides them much needed emotional healing in that it allows them to get those items that are specific to their situation and family needs. If we accepted clothing, appliances, etc., there would be no consistency and we might not have the correct sizes for the people or what they need. It is all about consistency and being respectful of those affected by the disaster.
To clarify the policy on evacuations, people cannot be forced to evacuate. There are voluntary evacuations and mandatory evacuations as when there is immediate danger. But even in a mandatory evacuation, the residents cannot be made to leave the danger zone. Keep in mind what happened in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. Authorities went throughout the neighborhood and sometimes even door to door but could not make the people leave if they chose to stay.
Have a ramblin' good week!
-- To reach Gail Davis, e-mail RuhenstrothRamblings@yahoo.com or call 265-1947.