Category: Resilience

Ben’s Story: A life-saving volunteering adventure


British Red Cross volunteer Ben Moon is spending 10 weeks with the Paraguayan Red Cross, strengthening the organisation and help its volunteers and staff do more for people in crisis.

Ben, who normally uses his first aid and emergency response skills to help people in the UK, is one of nine volunteers from across Europe heading to the Paraguayan town of Encarnación as part of the Volunteers in Capacity Building Projects (VinCaB) scheme. Dozens of VinCaB volunteers from European Red Cross societies and other organisations are visiting countries across Latin America and the Balkans to work on humanitarian projects.

In Encarnación, their work includes setting up a group of Red Cross lifeguards in the town, teaching first aid and helping local organisations work together to deal with disasters and emergencies. Ben, an environmental consultant from Cardiff, has shared some highlights of the trip so far: More

Communities in Haiti take the lead

Red Cross staff member speaks to local community at a meeting

Red Cross staff member speaks to local community at a meeting
© Jethro Sereme/BRC

“Mwen kontan we w” – a simple yet touching Haitian saying that marks the start of the working day for British Red Cross staff, volunteers and community members in Haiti. It means “I’m happy to see you”, and with the Haiti recovery in its third year, this is one working relationship that couldn’t be more important. More

Investing in peace: the Red Cross supports communities in Kenya



Signatures on the Choose Peace campaign

Signatures on the Choose Peace campaign
©Kenya Red Cross

The recent elections in Kenya saw millions of people queuing for long hours to vote, highlighting their commitment to influence social and political change.

Sadly, this ballot paper has often come at a cost. Election campaigns in the past decade have seen violence, loss of life and thousands of people forced to leave their homes.

Recently the Kenya Red Cross, funded by the Department for International Development (DfID), the European Community Humanitarian Office (ECHO) and other donors, has been working with communities to encourage a peaceful election and to prepare for potential unrest and violence, which has featured so frequently in the past. More

What do a mobile cinema, wind-up radio and emergency response have in common?

Girl looking at mobile cinema poster

Girl looking at mobile cinema poster
© Sharon Reader/BRC

In the time it takes to send a text, the earthquake that hit Haiti in 2010 destroyed an entire city. In a high-tech world where we can find out about a global disaster minutes after it has happened, aid agencies are increasingly asking how they can use technology to communicate with those affected. More

Resilience starts at home

Live sketching was used to illustrate the discussions


This is a guest blog from Corinne Evans, head of UK operations communications.

When the Mongol army went into battle, they wore flowing robes of silk. Unlike European chainmail armour, which was easily pierced, the fine mesh of silk enfolded spinning arrows and protected the flesh beneath.

So said clinical psychologist Elie Godsi, one of the many inspiring speakers at the British Red Cross conference on resilience yesterday. More

Get your questions in for the resilience conference


 A plant growing through the cracks in a pavement


This is a guest post by Alison McNulty, a Senior Researcher at the British Red Cross.

The British Red Cross is set to hold a conference in London next month that will bring together experts from many fields to discuss the best ways of putting resilience into practice.

Now you have an opportunity to put your point across and help shape questions for our panel members on the big day itself.


Putting crisis on the curriculum with Pupil, Citizen, Life-saver


Who was your favourite teacher? The one who brought the Victorians to life, or the one who made chemistry go off with a bang? Chances are they knew how to make their lessons exciting, relevant and inspiring.

Of course, even top teachers need subjects that will get their pupils fired up – and few fit the bill like first aid and humanitarian education. The Red Cross Pupil, Citizen, Life-saver campaign is urging the government to put these topics at the heart of England’s new national curriculum – we need you to sign our e-campaign and give us your support.

Schoolchildren next to a handmade sign saying refugee camp


How people in Nepal live with the threat of disaster


 George with colleagues from the Nepal Red Cross

Georgina Cooper, British Red Cross community engagement manager, recently visited our project in Nepal’s Kathmandu valley, where we’re helping people prepare for disasters. Here, she reports back:

My security briefing before going to Nepal – one of the most disaster-prone countries in the world – gave me plenty to think about on the plane: what to do in an earthquake, the dangers of traffic, and other hazards that may arise.

It was still fresh in my mind when I stepped off the plane and the Red Cross driver handed me a lanyard with emergency details and a whistle (in case I were to become stuck in rubble), which I dutifully slipped over my head.

Arriving at the hotel, I glanced around to see where I would ‘drop, cover and hold on’ should an earthquake strike, before going to sleep wondering how people live at this level of awareness.

It didn’t take long to dawn on me – they don’t. More