Message from the Chair of the Board Amit Mehra

It is an honour to acknowledge the exceptional efforts of Canadian Red Cross in this past year.
 
As a volunteer with Canadian Red Cross for more than 20 years, I know first-hand of the organization’s ability to adapt its services to remain relevant and meet changing humanitarian needs. The current pandemic has not been an exception. If anything, it has been an accelerant to innovation and adaptability unlike anything we have seen before.
 
My first term serving as Chair of the Board for Canadian Red Cross began as COVID-19 held this country – and the rest of the world – in its grip. As the pandemic devasted lives and livelihoods, it was remarkable to see how the organization quickly used its depth of expertise to help meet emerging needs across the country and offer life-sustaining and life-saving services.  
 
As Red Cross operations adapted to the ever-changing elements related to COVID-19, so too did the Board of Directors. It is a privilege to be the Chair of such an exceptional group of people dedicated to the governance of Canadian Red Cross.
 
Over the past year, the Board continued to work virtually to continue our commitments to demonstrate accountability, transparency, efficiency, continuous improvement, and excellence in governance.
 
We maintained oversight of the risk management for all operations; ensured stewardship of donor and public funds; monitored the health, safety and wellness of personnel; and, worked with management to examine the longer-term impact of the pandemic on the organization.
 
Along with the added complexity of governing during a pandemic, the approval of Vision 2025 is among many of the accomplishments this year. The Board is confident this new vision captures the strategic direction and priorities of Canadian Red Cross as the organization continues building its expertise and capacity to help people in Canada and around the world.
 
It has been an extremely busy and extraordinary first year as the Chair of the Board. I would like to thank Canadian Red Cross staff, volunteers, donors and our many partners whose dedication and generosity has helped us to help others during these challenging times.
 
As I look back on the past year and the impacts of COVID-19, I also pause and try to look ahead. While the future is unknown, especially during a pandemic, I do know that Canadian Red Cross will be there to help improve the lives of people in need just as it has been for more than a century. During uncertain times, that is a comfort all is itself.
 
Sincerely,
 
Amit Mehra
Chair of the Board of Directors
Canadian Red Cross
 
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