Category: Emergencies

Postcard from Solferino:5 (well, kind of…)

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Can I have my blog back now please? Finally, after a week a week in Italy celebrating the Movement’s 150th anniversary, where I had to hand over this space to a bunch of mewling and demanding younglings (or British Red Cross youth delegates, to give them their proper name), Cox is now back in the blog driving seat. And back in the UK, in fact – after an eventful planes, trains and automobiles-type journey home yesterday.

It was a good week, all said, and a particularly fruitful event for the British Red Cross. As an impartial observer, I can attest – hand on heart, no word of a lie, guv – that the British Red Cross’ stand was one of the busiest and most welcoming in the whole place. On reflection, this is because:

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Monday Movement update #13

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Here’s your weekly update on what different members of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement* are doing.

A little boy lies on a hospital bedPakistan photos: See a photo gallery of people who’ve been displaced by conflict in Pakistan, like four-year-old Abas (pictured), and find out how the Red Cross is helping them.

Gaza report and video: 1.5 million people trapped in despair six months after Israel launched its military operation. An ICRC report highlights their struggle, and a new video focuses on the civilians trying to rebuild their own lives.

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Postcard from solferino:3

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Day three in Italy with thousands of Red Cross volunteers celebrating the Movement’s 150th anniversary. Today, Donnie Lawson (pictured second from right) shares his tales of kilts, culture and quite long days in the sweltering heat.

Donnie’s day
Last night was cultural night, where young delegates from across the world took to the stage on the main marquee to put on a series of awe-inspiring performances. There was traditional dancing from Kenya, an Indonesian fashion show and even American break-dancing. I made a humble addition to the cultural theme by wearing my kilt. Hoots, mon.

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Postcard from Solferino:2

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I’m still in Italy with thousands of Red Cross volunteers celebrating the Movement’s 150th anniversary. Today, Caroline Sanderson is blogging about her hectic official and social schedules.

Caroline’s day
Hello. It’s Thursday already – the days have gone by so quickly. We’ve all made so many friends and are having a great time. Yesterday finished very late – the planned cultural night was replaced with a gig by an Italian rock n roll band that no-one had ever heard of. Including the Italians.

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Postcard from Solferino:1

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This week I’m in Italy with thousands of Red Cross volunteers to celebrate the Movement’s 150th anniversary in Solferino. Each day this week, a young British Red Cross delegate will be taking time to blog about their experiences here. First up – Mike Baxter.

Mike’s busy, busy day
Yesterday we set off for Solferino! I met my fellow delegates Caroline Sanderson, Donnie Lawson and Clare Everett early at Stanstead Airport. After the flight, we were collected by the Italian Red Cross in one of their minibuses. (This was better than the proposed three-hour long public transport marathon!)

As we arrived, there was a sea of Red Crosses and Crescents and the occasional Crystal too We booked in, signed up for our workshops and went to find our tent. Claire and Caroline somehow managed to go to the wrong sub-camp and we later established they had pitched camp in the Bangladeshi Red Crescent tent.

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Monday Movement update #12

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Here’s your weekly update on what different members of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement* are doing.

Men unload food bags from a truck in PakistanPakistan conflict: “Every time we entered a village, hundreds of people asked for help.” The ICRC, the only international humanitarian organization active in Swat and Lower Dir in Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province, has started to help those affected by conflict.

Protecting albinos in Burundi and Tanzania: Dozens of people with albinism have been murdered and their body parts sold in Burundi and Tanzania in the past few months. The Red Cross is providing humanitarian aid and support to their families and is defending their right to live in dignity.

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Mission accomplished in Bangladesh

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I was somewhere outside of Dhaka with just a driver, a copy of the Lonely Planet and one word of Bengali when I fully realised the enormity of the task that lay head of me. I put my trepidation to one side as my car rolled up the gangplank and on to the first of many ferry crossings I was to encounter in the coming month. I’d only landed in the country a few hours earlier and now I was on my way to the port town of Chittagong in the south east of Bangladesh. This was the first time I’d arrived in the immediate aftermath of a big disaster and I had a job to do.

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