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Sun., Aug. 31
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NNY Red Cross to close out Heroes campaign

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Jane G. Gendron, chapter executive at the American Red Cross of Northern New York, is calling the inaugural Heroes fund campaign a success, although it has yet to close.

While the goal was to raise $10,000 from March 1 to June 30, the agency has collected more than $5,000 thus far. Money keeps coming in. No matter how much is collected, Mrs. Gendron said, it’s still a success because it’s a new revenue stream. “It’ll be used for our disaster and emergency relief services,” she said. “We support clients with an overnight stay in a motel, food and help them get back on their feet. Our year-to-date total, since July 1, is $81,918 across the three counties.”

She said that helped 85 families, with a total 261 people, who were involved in house fires in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties.

The agency receives local financial help from the United Way, a state employees campaign, corporate donors and individual donors.

In 2012, the agency’s expenses were $387,950, and its income was $391,995. Mrs. Gendron said the goal is always to break even, but if a cushion is left over, that will go toward helping more people in need.

“It looks like we’ll be running very close in 2013,” she said. “Definitely, the dollars donated are used locally. That all doesn’t include money raised for Hurricane Sandy” relief.

She said 91 cents out of every dollar raised goes toward agency programs and services. With few people on staff, the Northern New York chapter relies heavily on volunteers. A large number of them are involved with the local disaster relief services efforts and respond to the scene of a house fire.

Mrs. Gendron said she is happy with the success of the campaign thus far and knows the total amount raised will continue to climb throughout the week, as a total for funds raised online won’t be calculated until Monday.

People can contribute by dropping off cash or a check, made payable to “American Red Cross of NNY” with “Heroes campaign” in the memo line, to the agency. Checks also may be mailed to American Red Cross of NNY, 203 N. Hamilton St., Watertown, N.Y. 13601. Donations may be made online by visiting the Red Cross website, www.redcross.org.

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