12 March, 2012 - Haiti: Thirty-five Red Cross National Societies from the Americas will unite in Haiti for the XIX Inter-American Conference, 13 to 16 March with a view of “Reducing the gaps” throughout the continent. Together, National Societies will review trends in humanitarian assistance and development, and work to address critical challenges in providing life-saving or long-term services to vulnerable communities. The conference will culminate with an agreement on joint strategic priorities in the region for the next four years.
Through a series of more than 80 virtual meetings across the Americas, local National Societies and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) have developed the Inter-American Framework for 2012 to 2016. This framework will be formally adopted at the conference.
The humanitarian context in which Red Cross operates includes the following factors: the Americas is home to 27 per cent of the world’s migrants. Violence and climate change are on the rise. And 82 per cent of Latin America and the Caribbean will be urban by 2020.
“Increased urbanization, migration, violence and climate change will deepen the challenges that vulnerable people face in the Americas,” said Xavier Castellanos, IFRC Director for Americas zone. “Supported by nearly one million dedicated volunteers across the continent, the Red Cross will be ready to serve the growing and changing needs of vulnerable communities in the region.”
“We are pleased to welcome our Red Cross colleagues to Haiti to share what we have learned in our recovery operation here as we all share some of the challenges faced in Haiti,” said Dr. Michaële Amédée Gédéon, President, Haitian Red Cross. “For example, 4 of the 5 most violent countries in the world were in the Americas in 2009. Here in Haiti, violence is also on the rise with increasing levels of sexual assault, domestic violence and more. The Haitian Red Cross has integrated violence prevention across all of its priority programmes such as promoting conflict mediation among at-risk-youth and delivering violence prevention and response messages to millions of Haitians.”
For a complete list of Red Cross National Societies in the Americas, visit http://www.ifrc.org/en/what-we-do/where-we-work/americas/.
Périclès Jean-Baptiste, Haitian Red Cross, Communications officer
Phone: +509 3170 8739 / +509 3492 3273
Enrique Jair Guevara, IFRC, Americas Zone, Communications officer
Phone: +507 317 3050 Mobile: +507 6670 7365
About the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world’s largest volunteer-based humanitarian network, reaching 150 mil¬lion people each year through our 187 member National Societies. Together, we act before, during and after disasters and health emergencies to meet the needs and improve the lives of vulnerable people. We do so with impartiality as to nationality, race, gender, religious beliefs, class and political opinions. For more information, please visit www.ifrc.org. You can also connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.