Feb 27, 2013, 8:54 AM
The Gambia Red Cross Society (GRCS) yesterday held a press briefing on the overview of its 2012 outlook, as well as 2013-2017 strategic plans.
The five-year plan aims to put in place programmes, aiming at responding to the needs of thousands of people hit or at risk of disasters, diseases, inequality, climate change, violence and social exclusion.
The objectives are to strengthen their capacity and increase their interventions to meet the needs of a growing number of vulnerable people and build community resilience.
Speaking at the occasion, held at GRCS Headquarters’ conference hall in Kanifing, Mr Bai Cham, the Secretary-General of the society said the press briefing had given them the opportunity to remind the public about the roles of the GRCS towards the realisation of the country’s development goals, based on humanitarian functions.
Cham reiterated that GRCS has an open door policy for partnership, based on fundamental principles to enable them reach out to the most vulnerable people and further collaborate, by ensuring that development reaches such people.
“We are only interested in helping those who suffer and we do so with impartiality, regardless of people’s nationality, origin, opinions or beliefs, and this is the key for us to reach people who need our help, especially in conflict situations, disasters and epidemics,” he said.
According to Cham, Red Cross is more effective in humanitarian response and grassroots communication, because they are strongly anchored in local communities.
He added that in The Gambia thousands of Gambia Red Cross volunteers and professionals are working in close collaboration with those in need.
“They are leading the effort to bring about positive change in their urban and rural villages, towns and cities,” he added.
For his part, Ebrima A.K. Sanneh, President of GRCS, said his organisation is complementing government’s efforts in national development.