How are you being a humanitarian this year?
The World Humanitarian Day, designated by the United Nations in 2003, is celebrated every year to celebrate humanity and the spirit that inspires people to help others who are in need, even in difficult and dangerous situations, often putting their own lives at risk.
The International Red Cross and Red Crescent network that includes the International Federation of the Red Cross, the International Committee of the Red Cross and its 187 national societies including the American Red Cross is focusing on on-going efforts in calling for protections of volunteers and promoting support and solidarity for Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers who risk their lives at the service of others.
In Syria 37 Red Crescent volunteers have been killed while on duty, since the beginning of the conflict. In the occupied Palestine territory, two volunteers from the Palestinian Red Crescent Society have been killed in the recent conflict and many more have been injured in the last months.
Many of these volunteers are young people – youth who are committed to saving lives by putting their own lives at risk every day.
ICRC is also drawing attention to the fact that health-care personnel are often among the first to be attacked in war and other situations of violence. A complete report from ICRC regarding this issue can be seen here: http://www.icrc.org/eng/resources/documents/report/2013-05-15-health-care-in-danger-incident-report.htm
As part of the network of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent, the American Red Cross Greater Cincinnati Dayton Region is responding to both local and international needs within our capacities. Our local disaster volunteers are responding to local emergencies and fires, assisting with services to the armed forces, and many other capacities within our mission. In the International Services Department, we are raising awareness and funds for Measles and Rubella Initiatives, educating the public about International Humanitarian Laws, and connecting families through Restoring Family Links services.
Disclaimer: the International Services Department does not deploy volunteer overseas. Deployment of volunteers is organized by the International Response and Programs by the American Red Cross National Headquarters.
This year’s theme for World Humanitarian Day is “the world needs more..” Express what you think you can do this year to support the work of humanitarian workers near and far through social media with the hashtag #theworldneedsmore through social media (twitter, Facebook, instagram), and change your word into action.
Be a humanitarian today, volunteer with the American Red Cross: http://www.redcross.org/support/volunteer/opportunities#step1
To learn more about International Services: www.redcross.org/intlcincinnati