During the first semester of 2008, the aim of the Regional Representation for Central America and Mexico is to support scaling up the efforts of National Societies in the region to develop and execute programmes in an efficient and integrated way. And so, helping to create resilient communities and a culture of prevention, while spreading the fundamental principles and humanitarian values of the Movement.
The Regional Health and Care programme is implementing successful and valuable initiatives to create a culture of prevention, especially regarding HIV and AIDS infection. Now more than ever the support to National Societies is necessary: four National Societies will be launched as new members of the Global Alliance on HIV. The programme is also helping National Societies to become stronger in the area of Non-Remunerated Voluntary Blood Donation. Thus, the regional programme is intensifying its contribution to targeted groups through capacity-building, social mobilization, strategic alliances and awareness-raising initiatives.
Similarly, the Disaster Risk Reduction Programme focused its efforts and actions on building resilience at the community level through tools, methodologies and training sessions. Also, efforts were focused on strengthening National Societies in the region to respond to the most pressing necessities with the cooperation of the Centres of Reference in El Salvador and Costa Rica.
The Humanitarian Principles and Values programme, during the first six months of 2008 placed an emphasis on the areas of migration, non-discrimination and anti-stigma for people living with HIV, as well as the promotion of the Red Cross humanitarian principles and values and gender policies at the community and National Society level.
During the period at hand, the regional Organizational Development programme placed an emphasis on assisting National Societies to develop Strategic Plans in line with the International Federation Policies, the XVIII Inter-American Plan and the Guayaquil Commitment. It has also worked extensively in promoting peer to peer cooperation between regional National Societies. Moreover, the department jointly with the International Committee of the Red Cross coordinated follow up actions with the provisional Intervention Committee on the Nicaraguan National Society intervention. All actions focused on improving National Societies management and volunteer systems at headquarters and branch level.
Financial situation: The total 2008 budget is CHF 2,481,547 (USD 2,190,122 or EUR 1,627,953), of which 82 per cent covered. Expenditure overall was 32 per cent.
No. of people we help: The Regional Representation Office works on building the capacities of National Societies in the region. Hence, direct beneficiaries of the Regional Representation's programmes are the National Societies themselves including their personnel at headquarters and branch level, governance bodies and volunteers. In effect, the Regional Representation's indirect beneficiaries belong to the civil society since it is through the strengthening of National Societies' capacities and the technical support offered, that methodologies, initiatives and activities as a whole can be carried out and executed accordingly.
Our partners: The work of the Regional Representation for Central America and Mexico receives support from several Red Cross and non-Red Cross partners through operational alliances and joint collaborations. Partners assisted programme areas by providing technical or/and financial support. Partners include International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Finnish, German, Italian, Netherlands, Norwegian and Spanish Red Cross. Additionally, the Regional Representation continues to reinforce its relationships with other organizations such as Plan International, ProVention Consortium, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), World Health Organization/Pan American Health Organization (WHO/PAHO), International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR), Organization of American States (OAS) and ECHO.