The formal dedication of the new $850,000 headquarters of the Coosa Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross was such a good thing. The modern, 8,243-square-foot facility fulfills a need on long duration, replacing very cramped previous quarters.
It is now headquarters for service to a five-county area — Floyd, Bartow, Chattooga, Gordon and Polk counties — as well as a facility that can contribute strongly to any response to major calamities, whether they be hurricanes or tragedies of the 9/11 variety. “You always have to be prepared,” said Terri Cook, executive director of the chapter. “That’s what we’re all about.”
That this region appreciates the long record of preparedness and service piled up by the Red Cross in efforts large and small — tornado and flood relief, blood drives, first-aid training and so much more — was obvious in that the entire cost of the new headquarters was raised through contributions before construc-tion even started.
WHILE THE STAFF actually moved into the building at the intersection of John Maddox Drive and Division Street, on land donated by Redmond Regional Medical Center, in January the official ribbon cutting waited until everything was set up and perfect.
That was quite a lot. The building contains a warehouse for supplies, a training center that can be turned into a disaster command center, a conference room, a large kitchen able to feed many people if necessary, as well as offices. It even has its own emergency generator so it can function independently.
The American Red Cross, and its local chapter, have always been known for being ready for anything and able to handle anything. Now the Coosa Valley Chapter has the home base from which its staff and many volunteers can deal with not only whatever might befall this region but also mass to launch assistance to others.
This new facility will be serving not only the Red Cross but Northwest Georgia well for decades to come. It is, as the local chapter director said, a very good thing to be prepared