#Article (Archive)

Banjul Red Cross Branch celebrates 13th Annual Youth gathering

Dec 20, 2011, 12:41 PM | Article By: Halimatou Ceesay

Banjul Red Cross branch on 17 December 2011 celebrated their 13th Annual Youth Gathering at the Gambia High School in Banjul on the theme “Find the volunteer inside you” in three thematic areas of protection, promotion and recognition.

The celebration, marked by a march-past from the July 22nd Square to the Gambia High School by students within the municipality of Banjul City Council (BCC) and Red Cross volunteers across the country, was led by the scout band.

In his welcoming remarks on the occasion, Dawda Jones, public relations officer of the BCC, said the relationship between the BCC and the Banjul Red Cross branch has been a fruitful one.

There are so many programs in the pipeline between the two institutions, he said, adding that they are very happy to partner with “the most active volunteer organization in The Gambia” and are happy to be the host of the 13th Annual Youth Gathering of the Banjul Red Cross branch. He therefore concluded by welcoming to the programme everyone on behalf of his mayor.

In her opening remarks, madam Adama Demba, deputy director at the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and a Red Cross volunteer for decades, said the Gambia Red Cross Society has been recognised by the Gambia Government adding that President Yahya Jammeh is the chief patron of the Gambia Red Cross Society, to whom they are showing their appreciation for his support to them over the years.

She added that since the establishment of the Gambia Red Cross Society they have put in place terms and conditions they stand by, which  has made the Gambian society to recognize their effort in the fight against HIV and AIDS saying the theme this year, which is “Find the volunteer inside you” should urge all volunteers to work in collaboration with parents and partner organizations to realize the vision saying volunteers should go out to the people and disseminate information to them about Red Cross.

It is only through the provision of knowledge that the people will understand the role of Red Cross in the society, she says.

She also said she is convinced the Banjul Red Cross branch are doing their best but urged them to do more saying she would always be there to help them when the need arises.

In his statement, Ebrima Sanneh, president of the Gambia Red Cross Society, said the national society has been tasked to talk to the government to ensure they enact  The Gambia Red Cross laws for protecting Red Cross volunteers in the society.

He also urged them to come up with proposals to be tabled before the National Assembly for enactment.

In her keynote address on the occasion, madam Fatou Gaye, sitting in for the acting-secretary general of the Gambia Red Cross Society, said they at the Gambia Red Cross Society are doing this for The Gambia, not for themselves.

Whilst praising the volunteers of Banjul for their hard work, Ms Gaye challenged them to keep up the hard work and commitment to their course even though “the work is hectic due to lack of resources compared to other volunteers in other countries”.

In his statement on branch activity report, Momodou Jahateh, the branch chairman, said the Banjul Red Cross branch is one of the active branches in the country, with 16 links and a branch office at the 22nd July Square in Banjul.

He said their activities include coverage of any social gathering, capacity building programs in first-aid development while some of the volunteers attached to the Tanka Tanka Psychiatric Hospital are serving as nurse attendants and other roles.

The ceremony ended with the awarding of certificates to deserving members amidst a musical jamboree.