Yokota Red Cross honors volunteers during recognition ceremony

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Natalie Doan
  • 374th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

The Yokota Air Base American Red Cross chapter recognized nine volunteers who continually went above and beyond in service to the base community during an award ceremony held at Yokota Air Base, Japan, March 21, 2023.

Two volunteers were coined by Col. Andrew Roddan, 374th Airlift Wing commander, for devoting multiple years of service to the Red Cross. Additionally, six volunteers received plaques for exemplifying the organization’s “Five Cs,” which all Red Cross volunteers strive to be: compassionate, collaborative, creative, credible, and committed.

Jennifer Dacquel, the Yokota Red Cross training services program lead, was also recognized as the Volunteer of the Year for overseeing the education of 166 individuals in 47 different classes.

“As an organization with only two paid staff, the Yokota Red Cross relies on volunteers to keep programs running,” said Lindsey Zgoda, the Yokota Red Cross regional program specialist. The Yokota chapter currently has 86 volunteers who have collectively worked 3,574 hours, as of March 1, to help maintain different services and programs, such as CPR and first-aid training.

As part of an ongoing effort to boost community morale, the organization partnered with the 730th Air Mobility Squadron and the 374th Logistics Readiness Squadron this month to host a coffee cart event, bringing coffee and baked goods to units. It offers this service to all squadrons, simply asking them to schedule an event with the Yokota chapter.

On a weekly basis, the Yokota Red Cross also ensures the Yokota Passenger Terminal is stocked with items transient DoD employees, military members, and their families might need, such as diapers, wipes, and snacks. It further assists on-base personnel by providing them with resources — like toiletries, linens, and meals — in the event they have displaced family members. Last year alone, the organization distributed over $1,000 worth of aid for this specific service.

“I enjoy volunteering with the Yokota Red Cross because I get to be more involved in the community and provide support,” said Christiana Schaefer, Yokota Red Cross volunteer engagement lead. “Helping others helps me and, in turn, provides everyone with a safe and reliable source for emergency assistance within the community.”