Apr 18, 2011, 1:34 PM
Speaking on behalf of the secretary general of GRCS, Buba Darboe said World Red Cross Day is an international day dedicated to the remembrance of individuals and organisations supporting, upholding and protecting human dignity, and emergencies and disasters.
Mr Darboe, a disaster management coordinator, said during Red Cross interventions, there are fundamental principles recognised which are globally guiding humanitarian services.
These principles, he said, are impartiality, humanity, independence, neutrality, volunteerism, universality and unity.
“These principles must be respected by all humanitarian organisations,” he affirmed.“We, therefore, urged all institutions and individuals to join in the services for humanity, as the humanitarian need is becoming more challenging day by day.”
The disaster management coordinator hailed GRCS for “the important steps taken” by its volunteers and partners in the humanitarian field.
One of aims of commemorating the international day was to inspire, facilitate and promote all humanitarian activities.
“This day, members of the international Red Cross movement raise the need for assisting people in need of protection during armed conflicts and all other situations of violence, and victims of disasters,” Mr Darboe said.
“This celebration is also marked by visiting psycho-social centres to show them that regardless of the reasons of their status, they are still treated with dignity in line with the international norms.
“The main message during World Red Cross Day is ‘treat all people with hospitality, dignity and humanity’.”
Speaking on behalf of the minister of health, Alajie Sankareh said one of the key objectives of this year’s commemoration is to raise awareness of the universal presence and the neutrality and impartiality nature of the Red Cross works.
“Throughout the year, we encourage you to take the opportunity to engage your institutions, departments and communities to promote awareness on the services of the Red Cross,” he said.
“The Gambia Red Cross is here for everyone,” Mr Sankareh stated, adding that GRCS is operating in line the seven fundamental elements that make up the identity of the international Red Cross and Red Crescent movement.
“They [the seven fundamental elements] are central to our common identity and purpose, and key to ensuring safety for our staff and volunteers, and safe access to humanitarian services for beneficiaries in times of disasters and other crises,” he added.
The president of GRCS, Dr Alieu Gaye, who read the statement of ICRC and IFRC, said Red Cross will strive to improve access to healthcare action to prevent non-communicable diseases.
The Red Cross movement will also strive for the integration of disaster risk reduction into climate change strategies, the strengthening of legal frameworks and greater respect for international humanitarian law.