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Magaly Polo: The Modern Face Of The American Red Cross

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mpolo red_cross“There is not enough time in the day,” is a common phrase in the conversational repertoire of multi-tasking individuals.  It expresses the daily frustration of people who has places to go and things to do but not enough time to do it all.  In this current, economically strained reality, many people hold multiple jobs and are unable to scheduled non-income producing, personally enriching activities.  Yet, unlike most, Magaly Polo finds the time and energy to wear her many hats, including that of international volunteer which has made her the modern face of the American Red Cross.

Elmont, NY resident, Magaly Polo, is an extraordinary woman.  She deals with all of the everyday stresses like many of her neighbors in her “Gateway to Nassau” community; the jobs, the home, the children, etc.  However, that doesn’t deter her from finding the strength to pursue her core calling, her desire to help others.

On January 12, 2010, Magaly’s homeland, Haiti, was stricken by a devastating earthquake that severely affected more than 1,000,000 people.  Ms. Polo, who holds multiple jobs and single handedly cares for her two children, answered the call during the massive international relief effort.  She made impromptu arrangements for her children’s care, took a leave of absence from her jobs and acquired an emergency passport so that she could assume her role as a Creole-speaking translator and the sole social worker aboard the USNS Comfort hospital ship stationed off Port – au – Prince, Haiti.

For 30 days, Polo worked from half-past five in the morning until midnight counseling patients from each of the ship’s wards, including the intensive care unit.  Her language and social care skills were put to use as she counseled many severely injured new mothers and mothers of children born on-board, to cope with bonding issues.  Magaly also helped patients cope with life-altering injuries, separation from and death of family and other major losses like that of homes, possessions, and jobs.

Her dedication to humanitarianism has earned her the distinct recognition of being the modern face of the American Red Cross.  Elmont On-Line recently accompanied Magaly to the Red Cross of Greater New York’s Heritage Gallery where an exhibit displaying her bio and humanitarian service had been established.  “The Red Cross Spirit, Then and Now”, as the exhibit is named, places her service alongside the service of World War 1 volunteer Mary Wiess, who served 19 months aboard the S.S. Red Cross and in French hospitals tending to wounded soldiers from both sides of the battlefield.  “People often talk about the need to dedicate more time to helping others, being a true advocate for others” says Aubrey Phillips, Elmont On-Line moderator, “when I saw Magaly’s contribution to the Red Cross Effort in this exhibit, it only proved to me that it takes a special quality to actually turn ambitious words to action . . . a quality Magaly has.”

After returning home, Polo received the “Woman of the Year Trailblazer Award” from the Nassau County Executive’s Office as well as The U.S. Navy’s “Person of the Day Award” while serving on board the USNS Comfort.  “I am humbled by this recognition.  Being referred to as the modern face for the American Red Cross I can only hope that I embody their “Spirit,” says Magaly.  She continued, “It makes me proud that my children can see the example I’ve set which will help them to become productive and compassionate citizens of this world.”

For information on how to volunteer with the American Red Cross, visit http://www.nyredcross.org.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 10 November 2011 07:20 )  

Comments

 
0 # Leon M. 2011-12-08 18:29
Ms Polo, You are truly remarkable. I am so proud to be able to tell people I know you and to share your story. God Bless.
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0 # Dianne 2011-11-15 23:25
Magaly is very compassionate human being who goes beyond the call of duty.. Her strength and energy continues to amaze me. I constantly asked her where does she finds the time and energy to work, take care of her children and volunteer. Magaly gives you that big reassuring smile and says it got to be done. Magaly is some one who truly enjoys helping others which is evident by her tireless dedication to her work which she makes seems effortless. I wish you all the best and I am happy that the Red Cross found a rare gem called MAGALY. ( my friend)
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0 # Georges 2011-11-14 21:45
This is such a well deserve article. Magaly is truly a model citizen of the world. She set the example for all of us to follow. Her endless ability to give of herself makes her an extraordinary person and I am honored to know her.
Thank you, you are truly a gifted person!
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0 # Dottie 2011-11-13 22:38
If only there could be more Malagy's in the world! I am happy that she continues her volunteering at the American Red Cross of Greater New York and is now a member of our Disaster Mental Health Leadership Committee.
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0 # Alka 2011-11-13 19:16
I feel privileged to know you. You are an example of a selfless and caring human being who truly is a Social Worker. Your tireless efforts to better life for those who are suffering is commendable. You truly are an angel of God who comforts and soothes. God bless you and your family.
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0 # Marie Moore 2011-11-13 11:46
Magaly is one of a kind. She always give 100% of herself to whatever task at hand. Always on the front line to help those in need. Words cannot express how much I admire her. To make a positive difference & influence in everyone you meet, truly is a gift from God and Magaly does it effortly. It's a pleasure knowing you Magaly. May God continue to work his miracle thru you.
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0 # Peter shenden 2011-11-13 10:18
Magaly:
Your telents and dedication never cease to amaze me. You are an inspirition to so many and as Jack said I am so fortunate to say that I am truly one of your many many friends. You[r] work is inspiring all of us to conintue to achieve the goals that you take as your day to day routine. Thank you for being you and I truly value your friendship as I am so lucky to know someone as great as you!
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0 # Simpson St. Fort 2011-11-13 08:14
I am so proud of you and you definitely deserve that recognition. I am so glad to see that your generosity, your kindness and love for humanity was evident not only on board of the USNS Comfort, but, in your daily life as well.
Congrats!
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0 # Jack Guastaferro 2011-11-12 08:31
Not surprising that you would make such a contribution and personal sacrifice Magaly. I'm so honored to be counted among your friends, and have opportunities to learn from you. You are truly an inspiration and I see you as a mentor to me. God bless you. Love you.
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0 # F. Reid 2011-11-12 07:30
I know you are humbled by the article and the accolades because people who are selfless and altruistic realize the limits of their services - they always want to do more.

But most of us are not surprised! We know you are special. And it's pleasing when we see someone get the recognition and roses when she can smell them.

Many thanks for you example and leadership. God's blessings always.

P.S. Please allow us to circulate this among our colleagues - as an example of service to others and an inspiration to us all.
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0 # Aunty Jean Byer 2011-11-11 16:30
Congrats Magaly, the sincere good deeds you do are appreciated, you are the kind of lady that never goes to sleep on a project , your stamina amaze me . You lit a candle that is now glowing all over the world , I am very proud and appreciative of your works .You sacrifice days away from your family to help others . A true to life trail blazer. You taught my daughter a lot just by being in your presence and always hear your saying , "YOU CAN DO IT ". my love and respect goes out to you and your family.
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0 # Rebecca 2011-11-11 07:24
I was just now able to read this article and it brought me to tears. It just reaffirms how wonderful a person you are. You are a true angel on earth. I feel so proud to know you. There is no other way to explain what you do, how you do it and your selfless dedication. God has touched you and made you an agent of His presence on earth. My dear friend.

Love always
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