Craig Burnett

Craig writes about all things Red Cross – from flooding to first aid.

Posts by Craig Burnett:

Beyond the headlines: How bad is life in Yemen right now?


A man walking through rubbleThis is a guest post by Michael Van Koesveld, Yemen country manager for the British Red Cross

Over the past few days, news stories about the conflict in Yemen have been popping up on Twitter feeds and Facebook walls.

Some are linked to a distressing video of six year old Fareed Shawky. Fareed was filmed lying in a hospital bed with terrible injuries. He died a few days after the video was taken.

Other stories tackle the political response to the violence – it’s being debated at the UN today and in the UK parliament tomorrow.

You might find these stories confusing, maddening or heartbreaking. But can politicians’ speeches, or a single video, tell us what life is really like for ordinary Yemenis? More

When a huge earthquake hit Nepal, our planning paid off


Nepal-Red-Cross-helps-older-woman-BLOGIn 2012 the Red Cross began a programme to get people in and around Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu, ready for disasters.

It’s part of a country-wide initiative bringing together the Red Cross, the UN, the country’s government, and other organisations.

The wisdom of planning for the worst became horribly clear six months ago, when a huge earthquake struck Nepal. More

Gruesome recipes inspire farming revolution


Woman chopping fruitA mixture of beer, snails, banana tree stalks and animal bones – it sounds like the most revolting recipe ever created.

But these ingredients are helping farmers in the Philippines grow bigger, healthier vegetables. They can eat the crops themselves or sell them for a useful profit.

The gruesome homemade concoctions are natural fertilisers and bug killers. They are cheap, easy to make, and kind to the environment too.

The secrets of natural farming are revealed at a Red Cross farmers’ field school in Ajuy, on the island of Panay. This area was devastated by Typhoon Haiyan almost two years ago.

As well as ripping up houses, the storm destroyed farmers’ crops – leaving already poor people with little or no way of making money. More

Syria: where families queue around the block for a few loaves of bread


Bread distribution in Damascus

On World Food Day, shocking pictures show the demand for bread in parts of conflict-hit Syria.

Earlier this month, volunteers from the Syrian Arab Red Crescent’s Damascus branch gave out 5,000 plastic bags crammed with loaves in a single day.

They made sure bread was given to the most vulnerable people in the area – including families living in five shelters nearby.


Meet the man bringing water to conflict-hit Aleppo


In the Syrian city of Aleppo, fighting means the taps often run dry.

This brings extra health problems for people who have already survived years of war.

See how Tammo Van Gastel helps to restore water supplies – and how others are installing toilets, making homes more secure and running kitchens across the city.

Six reasons you can’t live without our emergency app


We’ve just launched our free emergency app, packed with great features to help you before, during and after a crisis.

We think it’s a must for your phone – here are six reasons to hit download today.

Near Brcko district,  Bosnia and Herzegovina, two weeks after the floods -  ©IFRC/Nicole Robicheau

©IFRC/Nicole Robicheau

1. From blizzards to blackouts, the app has it covered

The app features clear and straightforward advice, telling you how to prepare for and cope with a huge range of emergencies.

There are tips for: car breakdowns, chemical emergencies, crowd incidents, droughts, fires, flooding, flu pandemics, heatwaves, overseas travel emergencies, power cuts, severe winter weather, storms and terrorism.

So whatever life throws at you, there’s a good chance our app can help. More

Read the heart-breaking story that inspired this Syrian doctor

A woman looking at the camera

©Thomas Evaldsen

After four years of deadly fighting, Syrian doctor Maissam Hamoui is still treating patients in the city of Aleppo. In that time, she has found hope in even the most shocking situations.

She says: “The worst experience I had was when a little baby girl was wounded in a bomb attack.” Maissam shapes her hands like a small bowl. “She was only a month old and not bigger than this.” More