– The American Red Cross NEPA Region is proud to announce The Pillowcase Project, part of a nationwide pilot program, with a vision of teaching kids to be prepared for any disaster and to teach empowerment through a series of age-appropriate activities. Be on the lookout for The Pillowcase Project to be held in elementary schools, after-school programs and clubs throughout the Northeast region.

The Pillowcase Project, sponsored by Disney, is implemented by trained Red Cross volunteers in a one-hour classroom session. The curriculum is structured by three core principles: Learn, Practice

and Share. Students will learn about hazards, how to prepared for emergencies, enhance coping skills, practice what they have learned and share their knowledge with family and friends. The program

emphasizes the importance of developing an emergency communications plan, fire evacuation plan and emergency contact cards. Students will each receive a workbook and certificate of completion.

They will also have the opportunity to decorate and personalize their own pillowcase, which are pre-printed with Disney characters and suggested items to include in the kit, such as: toothpaste, flashlight, blanket and a radio.

The NEPA Region is one of 60 Red Cross regions piloting the program this year, with the goal of expanding the program to 96 regions by the end of 2015. Peter M. Brown, Regional CEO said, “We are thrilled to bring The Pillowcase Project to local schools and after-school programs. The program

gives students the opportunity to learn about the science behind various hazards and the importance of preparedness in a fun and interactive way. The hands-on activities will also help to build confidence so

that kids are prepared to take action during an emergency.”

The Pillowcase Project was originally created in New Orleans and was inspired by local university

students carrying their belongings in pillowcases in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

For additional information on how to become a volunteer presenter, please contact Gail Toscano (see above). Media will be invited to individual presentations thru a media advisory.