Emergency Pillowcase Preparedness

Emergency Pillowcase Preparedness photo

Connolly and Landing school students participated in the American Red Cross’ Pillowcase Project when American Red Cross AmeriCorps representatives visited their schools on Jan. 22.

The Pillowcase Project teaches children coping skills to help them deal with an emergency situation and also offers tips and tools to help them prepare for emergencies. It’s made possible thanks to a grant from Disney and came to fruition after American Red Cross volunteers witnessed victims of Hurricane Katrina packing personal belongings in pillowcases when leaving their homes. 

Representatives explained the importance of having an escape plan in the event of a home fire, the need for smoke detectors in every room, tips on what to do if there’s a hurricane and more to students. The youngsters were also trained through the program’s three core principles, Learn, Practice and Share: learn how emergencies happen and how to stay safe when they do; practice what you learn so you’ll be ready when an emergency happens and share what you’ve learned so that everyone knows how to stay safe in an emergency.

After the discussion, students decorated pillowcases they received from the organization. The students were encouraged to draw pictures of important items they wanted to bring with them in an emergency. This important program was brought to the district thanks to Landing physical education teacher Karen Serani, who is a volunteer member of the American Red Cross.