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News Releases


Better safe than sorry: RBC donation helps Red Cross provide personal disaster assistance

RBC Poll finds only half of Canadians prepared for an emergency

MISSISSAUGA, ON, July 30, 2008 — Canadians are not prepared for unexpected emergencies, according to a 2008 survey by RBC Insurance/Ipsos Reid. To help heighten awareness of the need for emergency preparedness among Canadians, RBC Foundation has donated $600,000 to the Canadian Red Cross (CRC) to be a founding partner of the Red Cross Personal Disaster Assistance (PDA) plan.

"We are very proud to work with the Canadian Red Cross as a founding partner of the PDA plan to enhance disaster relief efforts to Canadians," said Neil Skelding, president and CEO, RBC Insurance. "RBC's assistance will go directly to provide humanitarian relief to Canadians affected by disasters, ranging from local emergencies to large-scale disasters. It will also support the essential services of Red Cross PDA volunteers by providing effective training and resources to help them assist victims of disasters."

According to the RBC survey, only one-half of Canadians are as prepared as they should be for various types of emergencies. In fact, only 47 per cent have an emergency supply kit for their home that includes first aid supplies, food, water, a flashlight and batteries. Just half (50 per cent) have an emergency supply kit for their car that includes first aid supplies, blankets or extra clothing.

PDA volunteers, who are specially trained and on-call 24 hours, seven days a week, provide comfort, support and depending on the circumstances, essential services and supplies such as shelter, clothing, comfort kits and blankets to Canadians who have been affected by disasters or emergencies. PDA is there to ensure that people affected by disaster have their basic needs met while they get re-established and contact family members, their insurance company or government social services.

"Whether it's helping set up emergency medical treatment abroad or assisting with a claim after an automobile accident or house fire, RBC understands the importance of being there to help people get re-established after an emergency," said Don Shropshire, National Director, Disaster Management, Canadian Red Cross. "With their support, we can ensure that our PDA volunteers receive the best training and resources to help Canadians when they need it most."

About RBC Insurance
RBC Insurance, the largest Canadian bank owned insurance group of companies, through its legal operating entities, RBC General Insurance Company, provides a wide range of life, health, travel, home, auto and reinsurance products as well as creditor insurance services to more than five million North American customers. Its fast growing home and auto insurance business offers Canadians a comprehensive range of personal home and auto insurance products through direct sales channels, including over the phone, the Internet and retail insurance branches, as well as through group insurance plans. RBC Insurance also offers a premier claims service, available 24/7 to help clients when they need it most. For more information, please visit www.rbcinsurance.com.

About the Canadian Red Cross
The Canadian Red Cross is a member of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, which includes the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the International Committee of the Red Cross and 186 national Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Our mission is to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity in Canada and around the world.

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Media Contacts:

RBC Insurance
Kerry Gaetano, (905) 816-5583, kerry.gaetano@rbc.com
Margie McNeil, (905) 606-1425, margie.mcneil@rbc.com

Canadian Red Cross
Heather Badenoch, (613) 740-1928, heather.badenoch@redcross.ca


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07/30/2008 09:48:02