Category: International

Child safety, Afghan style

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Three girls play as they pump water from a well

In the UK, keeping children safe means babyproofing your home or teaching youngsters to look both ways before crossing the road.

In Afghanistan, it could mean stopping children dying from diseases picked up from human waste.

More than just a nuisance

For most people in Britain, diarrhoea is a nuisance that can be easily treated. If a child is very badly affected, care is always available.

But in some countries, diarrhoea is life threatening.

Nearly 1.3 million children under five die from diarrhoea worldwide, making it the second most common cause of child deaths.

In fact, over half of these deaths occur in just five countries. Afghanistan is one of them.

What makes this even sadder is that children’s lives could be saved if communities had clean water, toilets and hand-washing facilities.

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Happy birthday Nishan: one family’s story of courage and strength in Nepal

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Dolma holds Nishan next to a neighbour carrying hay on her head

Little Nishan is nearly ready to walk. “Then our lives will become even more hectic,” his mother Dolma says, with a smile.

Laughing together, Dolma and Nishan seem like any happy mother and baby. But standing with Dolma in the ruins of the family home, Nishan can’t know the danger he has been in during his short life.

This time last year, Dolma was only ten days away from giving birth.

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From garden to plate in Nepal

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Kanchhi Laamichhane holds a bowl of corn kernals in front of her home

Who doesn’t like the idea of growing fresh and nourishing vegetables, then cooking a delicious dinner?

But this takes on a new meaning in Nepal, which only last year was struck by two enormous earthquakes.

Thousands of people died and many others lost their food, crops, farm equipment and homes.

Since then, the Red Cross has given 3,000 farming families grants to replace the seeds and tools they need.

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Zika virus explained

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Red Cross volunteers in Colombia talk to a group of localsThe Zika virus is carried by mosquitoes and it is spreading through the Americas. Cases have also been confirmed in several Asian countries.

It is suspected that the virus is the cause of birth defects, such as microcephaly, which results in babies being born with underdeveloped brains.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) is worried that the virus is spreading far and fast. It has declared a global public health emergency. 

Here is everything you need to know about this health crisis. More

When Facebook saved lives in Nepal

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Men use ropes to move boulders in a destroyed building

5.6 million people were affected by the Nepal earthquake © Palani Mohan/IFRC

This is a guest post by Ruth Newman, Nepal programme officer for the British Red Cross

When the massive earthquake struck Nepal’s Kathmandu Valley last April, I was about to board a plane on the other side of the country. Not knowing about the quake, I landed in Kathmandu less than two hours later surrounded by panic and devastation – buildings had crumbled, people were trapped, and electricity supplies and mobile phone networks were down.

But there was a wifi connection so I quickly logged onto Facebook on my phone to tell family and friends that I was OK.

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How one challenge led to another: climbing Mt Kilimanjaro for the British Red Cross

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Rachael trekking in Nepal

Rachael trekking in Nepal

This is a guest post by Rachael Fisher Hart, a British Red Cross supporter

On 29 January I’ll be facing one of the biggest challenges of my life: climbing Mt Kilimanjaro to raise funds for the British Red Cross.

Another challenge, and the British Red Cross worker who supported me when I needed it most, inspired me to take on this hard but rewarding adventure. More

Helping refugees in Europe: your questions answered

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Red Cross volunteer distributes relief items to migrants

(C) IFRC

Find out how you can help desperate refugees, asylum seekers and vulnerable migrants who have been forced to flee their homes.

What is the British Red Cross doing?

The British Red Cross has launched an emergency appeal for refugees across Europe.

We’re supporting our partner Red Cross national societies in Italy and Greece. Volunteers and staff there are helping refugees, asylum seekers and vulnerable migrants arriving on their shores. More