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How to Volunteer: Install Smoke Alarms with Red Cross

A team installs smoke alarms for the Home Fire Campaign in Fayetteville, North Carolina 2016

This month, Red Cross volunteers and our partners will install smoke alarms in communities across the United States. Many installations just happened this weekend in honor of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. National Day of Service, but installation events happen all year round and are a great way to volunteer in your community. To date, volunteers have installed more than 619,000 smoke alarms and 131 lives have been saved thanks to the campaign’s efforts.

This work is far from over. It’s heartbreaking to know that people die every day from home fires in our communities across the country. So we’re going big – we have a goal to reduce home fire-related injuries and deaths by 25 percent.

You can help us get there. Here’s a brief look at what to expect at your first installation event.

Step 1: Sign up for a fire safety event in your area.

You’ll need to register in our Volunteer Connection portal if this is your first time volunteering with us. (Welcome!)

Browse volunteer opportunities in your area by zip code on RedCross.org

Step 2: Get trained on the basics.

Your local chapter may offer a training ahead of your event, or you may learn the basics on the day-of. You’ll learn about the roles on an installation team, how and where to install alarms, and how to help families create their very own escape plans.

Home Fire Campaign 2016: Getting trained on how to install smoke alarms in District Heights, Maryland

Step 3: Join your installation team.

You’re ready to go! On the day of the event, you’ll be paired up with fellow volunteers and be given a neighborhood to cover.

Installing smoke alarms in Fayetteville, North Carolina 2016

Step 4: Help your neighbors by installing alarms.

By going door-to-door, you’ll make sure residents have working smoke alarms in their homes, and help install alarms in homes that need them.

Volunteer Patrick Smiley installing a smoke alarm in Fayetteville, North Carolina 2016

Step 5: Create escape plans.

Fire safety isn’t just about smoke alarms. You’ll help families plan escape routes from their homes and a pick a safe meeting place with this nifty map that you’ll leave behind to be posted on a fridge or other prominent place in their homes.

Creating an home fire escape plan in Arlington, VA

With your help, we’re helping keep families safe from home fires. We look forward to seeing you out there at the next installation event – go ahead and sign up to help today!

P.S. – The Red Cross Home Fire Campaign is made possible thanks to generous financial donations from corporate partners and the hundreds of local partner organizations and volunteers nationwide. Special thanks to Nationwide for generously supporting the Home Fire Campaign and Kidde for its generous donation of smoke alarms.