IFRC databank offers comprehensive look at Red Cross Red Crescent reach worldwide

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Geneva, 01 Feb 2017—The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has launched a new digital platform that shares information and data on the humanitarian work of its 190 member National Societies around the world.

This redesigned databank includes information from 2012 through 2015, based on reporting from each National Society.

“The databank represents a formidable effort to compile and quantify the collective and individual contributions of our membership to national, regional and global work to tackle humanitarian crises, build capacity, strengthen preparedness and further human development,” says Elhadj As Sy, IFRC Secretary General. “Improved information-sharing is at the core of our mission to enhance our membership’s accountability and promote transparency.”

Data from 2015 indicates that Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers and staff reached more than 309 million people with varied assistance, a significant increase from 2014, during which 240 million people benefited from Red Cross and Red Crescent services. The largest jump was in people reached through long-term and development programmes, which may reflect the IFRC’s increasing focus on risk reduction, emergency preparedness and community resilience.

The Tanzanian Red Cross saw in 2015 the largest increase of people reached through non-emergency assistance as a result of a major nation-wide distribution of insecticide-treated bed nets for malaria prevention. The Central African Red Cross also reported a steep increase in people reached that year due to an extensive malaria, tuberculosis and HIV-prevention programme that was successfully rolled out by community volunteers, even in the midst of violent conflict.

The Nepal Red Cross reported a significant increase in beneficiaries due to its large-scale emergency response to the devastating earthquake in 2015, while the Nigerian Red Cross saw a significant expansion of its emergency work aiding uprooted people in the country’s turbulent north.

Red Cross and Red Crescent programmes and services in 2015 were carried out by more than 14 million active volunteers and nearly 450,000 staff. In recent years, there were around 17 million Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers globally—a number that fluctuates annually depending on the scale and number of disasters and crises.

“Collecting, tallying, verifying, harmonizing, analysing and presenting data from 190 independent organizations with varied monitoring and reporting systems is a complex process, with data quality improving every year,” says Rania Alerksoussi, an IFRC specialist who coordinates the initiative. “Nevertheless, this databank is the most comprehensive accounting of the network’s resources and reach to date and provides a tangible illustration of our work with vulnerable communities around the world.”