Saturday, February 13, 2016

(Jacob Blickenstaff)
Local Red Cross will distribute smoke detectors
Posted on Nov. 1, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on Nov. 1, 2013 at 6:19 p.m.

ELKHART — The Elkhart County Chapter of the American Red Cross and local fire departments will team up to hand out fire safety information throughout neighborhoods Saturday morning.

More than 100 people, comprised of Red Cross volunteers, firefighters and community volunteers will canvass neighborhoods in Elkhart, Goshen, Nappanee, Middlebury, Bristol and Osolo, among others, Saturday morning and early afternoon Nov. 2, to talk with families about ways to prevent fires and to hand out batteries for smoke detectors. They will also offer smoke detectors to families who don’t have them.

Homes in Elkhart County are at greater risk from fire than any other disaster, according to a press release from the Elkhart County Chapter of the Red Cross.

The event is part of the organization’s Project S.A.F.E. (Smoke Alarms for Everyone) and has been held annually for the past four or five years, said Kim Komdeur, major gifts officer of the Red Cross’ Elkhart County office.

Komdeur said volunteers go to fire-prone communities — those that are recommended by the fires departments.

“Sometimes we go to the same (neighborhood) over and over because, let’s say it’s a mobile park and there’s a lot of turnover,” Komdeur said. “In many cases it’s new parts in the community, or we get different socioeconomic groups who may not be very familiar with fire prevention and the necessity for it.”

Komdeur said this year’s goal for this Red Cross’ district is to hand out 10,000 smoke detectors.

The Red Cross partnered this year with The Grainger Fundation, Jayco and AEP.