The Irish Red Cross has welcomed today’s announcement of €2.75 million from Irish Aid for disaster relief and programme funding.
Over €1m is being allocated to Red Cross Movement’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund, which provides immediate financial support for emergency response operations and preparations for imminent disaster.
The Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) will receive €750,000 to help with the largest humanitarian crisis in the world.
A further €400,000 has been allocated to the Irish Red Cross Capacity and Resilience programme in Niger which has been running for ten years.
John Roche Head of the International Department at the Irish Red Cross said the funding reflected the Irish people’s commitment to the world’s most needy.
“An estimated 12.2 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance in Syria alone, with more than half of the pre-crisis population displaced either internally or as refugees in neighbouring countries.
“SARC is the main provider of humanitarian services in Syria and the entry point for all NGOs operating in the country. It is also the key implementing partner to the United Nations with up to 60 per cent of UN relief channelled through the society. This funding is an important enabler of that work,” Mr Roche said.
He also welcomed the €400,000 allocated to the Niger programme. Mr Roche said the Irish Red Cross is highly regarded in the West African country having agriculture, health, water and resilience programmes.
“Around 100,000 people in 45 areas in central and southern Niger have been touched by these programmes.
“The effect of regular periods of drought and pestilence can lead to food shortages, crop failures and livestock fatalities. We have seen in the past that areas where the Irish Red Cross works have fared far better than other parts of the country in coping with crisis. This allocation will support our ongoing work in a country where we have been operating for the past ten years,” Mr Roche said.
“Irish Aid funding will also be used when sudden disasters strike such as those in South Asia this year. Some of this money will be go into preparedness strategies which saved countless lives in countries like Nepal, India and Mayanmar,” he added.