My first week at the Red Cross was basically just orientation. We spent the first two days learning about the Red Cross and getting trained. It was very necessary considering we now represent the Red Cross so we need to know about the programs and how to handle different situations. Being a member of the Red Cross gives me a whole new responsibility as a citizen. After being CPR/First Aid certified, I am now able to step in and help when needed. We learned how to be active bystanders rather than helpless bystanders. I have actually felt my new responsibility as a citizen in different situations since training. I was driving home on the freeway and was right behind a bad accident with a motorcyclist and a car. The motorcyclist was laying on the ground of the freeway and was not moving. The man in the car had gotten out of the car and was standing next to him. Another car had pulled over and seemed to helping. Since the motorcyclist lying on the ground was not moving, I immediately thought he was unconscious and needed CPR. I felt it was my duty to pull over and help this man. Considering it was the middle of rush hour in Los Angeles and I was on the other side of the freeway, there was no way I was going to safely get across the freeway. I decided that someone else had pulled over to help so the best I could do in that situation was to call 911 and make sure help was on the way. I called and said I had just witnessed this accident but could not pull over to help and wanted to make sure that help was coming. They said that someone else had called in right before I did but that they were glad I called to make sure. Truthfully, I don’t know if I would have reacted that way had I not been part of the Red Cross and felt confident in my ability to help.
Besides that, the start of my internship was a “hit the ground running” situation. My department was in the middle of one of their busiest times of the year. Because of this, myself and the other two interns were helping organize, prepare, and attend events. Each day was filled with tasks in accordance with the events. However, we were not able to officially transition into the department and learn about the projects we would be doing because of how busy the department was. It was cool to see how the department gets involved with the communities but the other interns and myself felt unsure exactly what we would be doing the rest of the summer. It took about 3 or 4 weeks in to finally get settled.