Germany, here we come!

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This Thursday, I will be flying to Germany with five other British Red Cross volunteers. Our mission (should we choose to accept it): win the European first aid competition.

Two first aiders help casualty

First Aid Convention in Europe (FACE) is an annual event that brings together Red Cross volunteers from throughout Europe. The highlight of the event is a competition to find the best team of first aiders in Europe. Last year the convention was held here in Liverpool and I’m sure many people reading this may have been involved.

FACE 2009 is being held in the city of Oldenburg. Twenty-five countries have entered the competition and around 1,000 Red Cross volunteers are expected to attend. I’m lucky enough to be on one of the British Red Cross teams competing for the coveted 1st place trophy. This year, the British Red Cross is sending two teams. One team is from Edinburgh, the other from Surrey (me!). More

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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Meet Daahir in refugee week

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This week we have been encouraging everyone to look beyond the label to the person and who they actually are. There are many, many people who come to the UK with with a vast array of skills and talents and they make enormous contributions to society.

Meet Daahir for instance, who has been volunteering with the Red Cross in Bristol since February this year…..

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