Category: Health

How John got his mojo back…

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John-Roy-hairdresser-BLOGAfter a career spent hob-nobbing with movie stars, John found himself widowed and losing a leg in quick succession. It was a really low time – but we helped raise his spirits.

John Roy had one of those jobs.

As a props lorry driver for international blockbusters – such as Batman, the James Bond movies and The Da Vinci Code – he travelled the world. It was an adventurous and exciting life.

But then, in the space of just a few years, he was hit by a cruel double blow. More

Pictures and play help Nepal’s children find their voice

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©Eliza Cheung/IFRC

©Eliza Cheung/IFRC

Three months after the Nepal earthquake, the Red Cross is helping traumatised children rebuild their lives.

In a health centre in Nepal, Eliza Cheung leafs through page after page of drawings. They are of all the same subject; a detailed Buddha. Sketches in crayon, pen and pencil.

The mother of the 12-year-old boy who created them died in April’s earthquake. Now the boy’s father has abandoned him.

The boy was brought to a health clinic in the village of Melamchi and eventually to Eliza, a Red Cross clinical psychologist.

“I’m not quite sure what it means yet, but [his drawings] really touch me,” Eliza says. “This is not a simple picture. I think he is trying to find ways to remember his mother. It is quite a traumatic experience for someone so young to go through.” More

Video: ‘Oh, I do like to be beside the seaside’

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Brighton-promenadeGrannies splashing in the sea? Eighty-year-olds on helter skelters? Welcome to a day at the seaside with the British Red Cross – Sixties style!

This’ll gladden your heart and warm your cockles – it’s a lovely film showing a Red Cross trip to Brighton 50 years ago (full video below).

Brighton-telescopeBack in 1965, our volunteers took a group of older women, many of whom lived alone and didn’t get out much, for a day trip to the coast. It was a highlight of their year.

You can see the happiness etched on their faces. As the narrator says: “One of [the ladies] said she couldn’t sleep for thinking of it.” More

I thought: ‘Volunteering? I could do that…’

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Yvonne-Croft-WEBMeet the woman who was so inspired by our support during her own hour of need that she now wants to become a volunteer.

Sometimes, the most rewarding relationships begin in the strangest places.

When Yvonne Croft first came across the British Red Cross, she was recovering from a broken ankle at Leeds General Infirmary.

Doctors had judged her fit to leave hospital, but she was still a bit uncertain on her feet.

And because she lives alone and has steps leading up to her flat, hospital staff were very concerned about her returning home alone. More

Violence pushes Yemen’s water supply closer to the brink

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A concrete tower in the desert

© ICRC

As fighting rages in Yemen, water networks have been disrupted by long and frequent power cuts – bringing more misery for the country’s people.

Damaged pumps and pipes make people turn to dirty, disease-carrying water, or leave them without anything to drink at all.

This would be a terrifying prospect in any country. But Yemen has been on the brink of a water crisis for years – if the supply dries up further, the results could be catastrophic.

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Crisis in Yemen: Your questions answered

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Where’s Yemen? Who lives there?

A map showing Yemen and the Middle East

©BRC

Yemen is in the Middle East, directly below Saudi Arabia and about 500 miles from Dubai.

It’s twice the size of the UK and home to about 26 million people, more than double the population of Scotland and Wales combined. It’s one of the poorest countries in the Middle East.

What’s the crisis about?

Yemen has been affected by armed conflict for decades. This has made it harder for people there to earn money, go to school or even get everyday essentials such as food, water and healthcare.

But in the last few months the fighting, which involves a wide range of different armed groups, has become much worse in most of the country’s provinces. More

Why prevention really is better than cure

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Homeless-BLOGThey sound worlds apart, but a homeless programme in the USA and our social care work here in England share one big idea – tackling problems early makes sense.

A few years ago, the state of Utah launched a novel strategy to combat its chronic homeless problem. It just gave everybody a home.

On the surface, this sounded like a crazy move. Most of the state’s 2,000 chronically homeless population had significant mental health issues and substance addictions.

Frankly, they didn’t seem like ideal candidates to be trusted with the keys to a house. (The traditional approach had always been to place the homeless into shelters until they were deemed ‘housing ready’.)

And yet, the idea worked like a dream. More

From terror to treatment: Three TB stories

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A man standing outside

Andrey Yushko

When someone in Turkmenistan learns they have tuberculosis (TB), the questions they need answered come thick and fast. What is this illness? Will it kill me? Can I get treated for it? How will it affect my family? Will I lose my job, or even my home?

TB can kill. But the disease is curable, although treatment in Turkmenistan is a long and difficult process. And poverty and stigma can make recovery even more difficult.

That’s why, for more than a decade, the British Red Cross has worked with our partner – the Turkmenistan Red Crescent – to support thousands of people through months of treatment and recovery. More