Armed Forces Emergency Services
American Red Cross Armed Forces Emergency Services (AFES) helps military members and their families cope with separation and other special needs related to services by contacting the Red Cross.

  • Emergency Communications- People who are in the military or their families can send emergency messages (death, serious illness of a family member, the birth of a child, or any other family emergency) through the Red Cross worldwide emergency communications network, which operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
  • Verification of emergency leave information-The Red Cross provides military personnel and their commanders with fast, reliable information to help them make decisions regarding emergency leaves, deferments, compassionate reassignments, and dependency discharges.
  • Emergency financial assistance--The Red Cross collaborates with the military aid societies in providing financial assistance when an urgent personal or family crises arises--that is, emergency travel, burial assistance, or urgent health and welfare needs such as food and shelter
  • Counseling, information, referrals, and other social services- Red Cross workers are neutral personnel to whom military personnel and their families can go for confidential problem solving.
  • Health and safety and HIV/AIDS education, disaster assistance and volunteer opportunities. The Red Cross provides health and safety training to military personnel and their families; trains them as health and safety instructors; provides assistance in times of disaster; and offers opportunities for volunteer assignments on military installations.