Dear Cruz Roja Primo Tapia Members:
During 2021, the pandemic challenged CRPT more than we could have ever anticipated. Challenges like, how do we keep the Thrift Store open? How do we hold events? How do we maintain the overall fellowship of our volunteers? How can we meet our financial obligations to Cruz Roja? But with the hard work of our volunteers, we held our own and survived: a feat we should all take pride in!
2022 has posed fresh challenges. After years of dedicated service to CRPT, two of our Board members, Rebecca Robertson and Davida Willis, retired. In addition, Jennifer Baker, Thrift Store Director for the last two years also stepped down. Each of these ladies leaves a legacy of service, dignity, and honor. Fortunately, however, we have found excellent replacements. Steve Miller, our new Treasurer, has a long history of volunteerism. Denise Studer, a former teacher, is our new Thrift Store Director. Connie Williams joined the board as Communications Chair and Donna Markey took over Connie’s previous role as our new Volunteer Coordinator for the Thrift Store. In addition, the Board of Directors have revised our original Bylaws.
I want to now talk briefly about CRPT. People often ask me why they should become members of our organization. I always start off extolling the benefits of membership. I explain how an additional ambulance in Primo Tapia provides better service to our area. I talk about how our members who either visit, or live south of Alisitos can call the special number and summon an ambulance from Primo Tapia that will take them North. I also explain how our members get a 50% discount on transportation to the border if they are experiencing a life-threatening emergency.
But over this last year, I have also grown to appreciate the ways CRPT benefits our community in general. I’ve thought about how the extra Primo Tapia ambulance that our organization provides isn’t just “our” ambulance, it’s Cruz Roja’s ambulance, and it offers an extra level of service to our entire community, to the members of CRPT, and to the non-members of our community. The same is true of our Thrift Store—it not only brings in much needed revenue for our organization, but it also benefits the general community by filling a need for discounted second-hand items. In addition, CRPT’s Thrift store is a vortex for a wide variety of donations which in turn, also benefits the community.
Another question people ask me is why CRPT needs volunteers? Well, the short answer is simple: without volunteers, CRPT would not exist. The reason is that the revenue we generate from memberships is not nearly enough to meet our financial obligation to Cruz Roja. To meet that obligation, we are dependent on revenue generated by events, donations, and the Thrift Store. And all of these areas require volunteers! So, it is our volunteers who truly drive CRPT. They put on the events. They sit at our membership booths. They gather donations. They work at the Thrift Store. And they sit on the Board. It is our volunteers who donate their time and energy, and I have plenty of reason to support each and every one of them to the best of my ability. They deserve our gratitude, our appreciation, and our praise for keeping our organization viable and strong.
So, what’s new for 2022? Well, we are reinstating volunteer appreciation events, honoring birthdays, and recognizing other life events. In addition, we’re striving to find better ways to enhance the support, training and communication of our volunteer workforce. We’re also finding new ways to advertise on a more regular basis. With any luck, we will be opening the Thrift store for more than 2 days per week. Plus, we are bringing back Bingo!
Paul S. Ross
President, Cruz Roja Primo Tapia