The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world’s largest volunteer–based humanitarian network. With our 190 member National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies worldwide, we are in every community reaching 160.7 million people annually through long–term services and development programmes, as well as 110 million people through disaster response and early recovery programmes. 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.
Guided by Strategy 2020 – our collective plan of action to tackle the major humanitarian and development challenges of this decade – we are committed to saving lives and changing minds.
Our strength lies in our volunteer network, our community–based expertise and our independence and neutrality. We work to improve humanitarian standards, as partners in development, and in response to disasters. We persuade decision-makers to act at all times in the interests of vulnerable people. The result: we enable healthy and safe communities, reduce vulnerabilities, strengthen resilience and foster a culture of peace around the world.
IFRC Global Strategy on Migration 2018 - 2022
“In engaging in the area of migration, National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies have the purpose – individually and together with the International Federation and the ICRC – to address the humanitarian concerns of migrants in need throughout their journey … to provide assistance and protection to them, uphold their rights and dignity, empower them in their search for opportunities and sustainable solutions, as well as promote social inclusion and interaction between migrants and host communities.” IFRC Migration Policy, 20091
Increasing migration is both a result of, and giving rise to, some of the most significant humanitarian challenges of the 21st century. In recent years, the large-scale movements of migrants, including refugees, in different regions such as around the Mediterranean Basin, in the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea, in Eastern Africa and the Horn, and in Latin America, from the Northern Triangle onward to Mexico and the United States, have dramatically highlighted the vulnerabilities and potential risks facing migrants, particularly those in an irregular situation. These movements typically include a mix of people moving due to fear of persecution, conflict and violence, human rights violations, poverty and lack of economic prospects, or natural disasters. Many people cross borders to find work, and an increasing number are moving as a result of climate change. People’s reasons for migrating are complex, and are often a combination of these and other social and cultural factors.
The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has a longstanding commitment to working with and for migrants. National Societies provide specific support to groups such as refugees, asylum-seekers and migrant workers, among others, and provide life-saving services to the most vulnerable, advocating on migrants’ needs and rights, and enhancing access to longer-term support. Working with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), National Societies also play a crucial role notably in Restoring Family Links (RFL), including in reuniting families when possible.