The Red Cross Round-up

The Round-up offers a weekly sample of what our sister Red Cross Societies are working on around the world.
VANUATU: When Cyclone Pam smashed into Vanuatu on March 13, 2015, it not only damaged homes, crops and water sources, but also wiped out mobile communications. This prevented families from connecting with their loved ones. The Restoring Family Links program is an important service that the Red Cross provides to help people re-establish contact with their family members after separation in such circumstances. Following the devastation in Vanuatu, the Red Cross received over 300 enquiries through the program. So far they have re-established 37 cases.  However, as mobile connection is gradually returning, families have now been able to connect with one another more easily. Canadians wishing to support our efforts can make a financial donation to the Cyclone Pam Relief Fund online, by calling 1-800-418-1111 or by contacting their local Canadian Red Cross office.
MICRONESIA: On March 27, super typhoon Maysak brought widespread destruction to islands across the Federated States of Micronesia. Both Chuuk and Yap States suffered from the most extensive damage. Both are under a state of emergency as efforts to assess the scope of the damage continue. The Red Cross has since been working with the coast guard to deliver relief supplies such as food, water and emergency shelter materials. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is also assisting by providing funds to purchase non-food items and emergency shelter kits. Disaster management and logistics specialists have also been deployed to assist with the operation, including a communications delegate from the Canadian Red Cross.  

 Volunteers loading up emergency supplies so they can be delivered to another island. Photo: Karen Leiva

YEMEN: Three members of the Yemen Red Crescent Society have been killed within the past week while providing relief to those in need across the country. As a result, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the IFRC have called upon all those involved in this tragedy to respect its humanitarian work and to guarantee the safety of aid workers worldwide. Under international humanitarian law, it is prohibited to attack the staff and volunteers of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, and all others whose sole purpose is to provide humanitarian relief in emergencies. A team of four ICRC medical personnel are currently headed into the war zone, where there are far too many casualties and not enough surgeons. The medical team boarded the boat on Tuesday, April 7  in Djibouti and set off for the 12-hour trip to Aden, Yemen. This team will work for three weeks around the clock, and will then be replaced. 

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