Aid Work

A side of the refugee crisis you don’t often see: What happens after a boat sinks?

volunteers retrieve body from beach

Here we are again.

Just over a year ago, Red Cross chief executive Mike Adamson warned about the lack of EU action on the migrant crisis. Now, once again, volunteers in Libya are recovering bodies from the sea.

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Letters from a crisis: goodbye to new friends

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Having spent a month in a refugee camp in northern Greece, Gwen Wilson is now preparing to say goodbye.  

Some of her refugee volunteers have decided to apply for asylum in Greece. Others are still hoping the borders will open.

Writing to you for the final time, retired nurse Gwen gives her impressions on life on the front line of Europe’s refugee crisis.  

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Letters from a crisis: local help and a premature baby

mother and young child

How do you begin to organise a refugee camp?

Gwen Wilson has seen it all. After retiring as a nurse, she worked in Sierra Leone during the Ebola crisis. Now Gwen has swapped her life in Sheffield for a refugee camp in northern Greece.

Writing to you from Thessalonica, Gwen gives her impressions of life on the front line of Europe’s refugee crisis.         

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Syria – where do we go from here?

Devastation in Homs

Syria today is a source of both hope and frustration.

Over the weekend, one hundred trucks carrying food and medical supplies reached the besieged town of Al Rastan for the first time since 2012.

Yet still people are forced to flee their homes. One day earlier, the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) evacuated more than 500 people from Madaya, Zabadani, Foua and Kefraya.

There’s a perception among some in the outside world that the situation in Syria is getting better now. It’s not.

Even in areas that have experienced a respite from the constant thud of mortars, the eerie silence that remains reveals another problem. How will people ever come back and pick up the pieces?

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Letters from a crisis: ‘how can this be happening in the EU?’

grandmother and child
Ever wondered what it’s really like to work in an emergency?

Gwen Wilson has seen it all. After retiring as a nurse, she worked in Sierra Leone during the Ebola crisis. Now Gwen has swapped her life in Sheffield for a refugee camp in northern Greece.

Writing to you from Thessalonica, Gwen gives her reflections on supporting refugees in Greece.

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Meet the children of Idomeni

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We all remember the thrill of jumping into a good puddle. Yet for the children living in Idomeni camp, a week of heavy rain means puddles have long ceased to hold much wonder.

Despite their sodden blankets and shoes, the children remain filled with hope of a better life. They hope that the border will open soon so they can continue northward to be reunited with their loved ones.

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Ebola, midges and me: Scotland’s nurse who loves a challenge

Marjorie Lee at the end of the West Highland Way that she trekked to raise money for British Red CrossMarjorie has tackled challenges that many of us can only imagine. Less than a year ago, her working day was more extreme than most. Yes, she was a nurse. Yes, she treated patients. But she did it all in our Ebola treatment centre.

Now she’s back home – and looking for new ways to help. Even if it means taking on Scotland’s midges … More

Why we need money, not goods, for Nepal

Nepal-kid-and-babyWe’ve been inundated with kind offers of all sorts of goods in the past week – but however well-intentioned, such donations won’t help. In big disasters, money talks.

News of the Nepal earthquake was barely out before the first calls came in.

People across the country had been moved by the distressing scenes on television and wanted to help. Many wanted to donate goods to send overseas – sleeping bags, tents, children’s clothes, kitchen utensils and even food.

But while the Red Cross is grateful for these offers, such an approach won’t work. Here’s why: More