Sudan now home for 10 New Zealand Red Cross aid workers

This week, the tenth New Zealand Red Cross aid worker departs to join her Kiwi colleagues, helping thousands of vulnerable people in Sudan.

Currently New Zealand Red Cross has 30 aid workers deployed in over 15 different countries, with a third of them now working in the troubled regions of Sudan.

The country is Africa's largest and the location of the world's worst humanitarian crisis. After 20 years of internal and cross border conflict, millions of Sudan's people are in desperate need of assistance and protection.

Of the 10 New Zealand Red Cross aid workers in the Sudanese region, eight are health specialists, one is a protection officer and one is a water and sanitation engineer.

New Zealand Red Cross' Humanitarian Programme manager Glenn Rose says New Zealand Red Cross aid workers, particularly the health specialists, are highly valued in the field and well regarded due to their Kiwi 'can do' attitude.

"The International Red Cross Movement has specifically requested the services of New Zealand Red Cross aid workers. Sudan offers some huge humanitarian challenges and our Kiwi aid workers arrive in country with great skills, a positive attitude and they work hard to make a difference. They are very well respected and held in high regard."

Three of the New Zealand Red Cross aid worker health specialists working in Sudan have been previously awarded the Florence Nightingale medal, the highest honour for the nursing profession within the International Red Cross Movement.

The International Red Cross Movement has maintained a presence in Sudan for the last 20 years providing assistance and protection to vulnerable people. The Movement has a staff of 1500 working in the country, carrying out the organisation's largest humanitarian programme worldwide.

Kiwi aid workers are deployed on missions around the world as part of New Zealand Red Cross' international programme which is funded by generous donations from the New Zealand public along with a contribution from NZAID, the government's international aid agency.