And supports election of new IFRC President

 Tuesday 7 November 2017

The Vanuatu Red Cross Society (VRCS) is being represented at the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) General Assembly being held in Antalya, Turkey.

And on Monday 6 November, Vanuatu and other red cross societies from the Pacific stood together in supporting and successfully elected Italy Red Cross Society President Francesco Rocca to the position of IFRC President.

 “It is only normal that we support Italy because they have been talking with us about potential program support, similar to what they are already doing with other societies in the Pacific”, VRCS President Ati George Sokomanu said after personally congratulating Mr. Rocca after his successful election on Monday.

 VRCS Chief Executive Officer Jacqueline de Gaillande says “they have talked to us about support VRCS in first aid training programs for accidents and disasters happening in the sea. They have supported the Cook Islands red cross and we have discussed with them the possibility of partnering with them in a similar program for us in Vanuatu”.

Mr. Rocca was elected by 178 national RCS presidents attending the IFRC General Assembly meeting in Antalya, Turkey.


 In his speech, Mr. Rocca paid tributeto the courage and dedication of Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers around the world, and vowed to focus on ensuring they have continued and greater support.

 “We owe it to them to change and to strengthen our capacity,” he said. 

“One of the first things I will focus on is addressing any integrity issues within our network. We owe it to our volunteers who risk their lives every day. We owe it to the communities who look to us for support, when no one else can help. And we owe it to the people around the world who look to the Red Cross and Red Crescent as signs of hope.”

 Mr Rocca’s election comes at a critical juncture for the IFRC and the wider humanitarian community. Aid organizations are responding to a range of complex and global challenges, and are struggling to respond to rising needs while balancing increasingly constrained budgets.

 The new President will play an important role in ensuring that Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies can continue to support the most vulnerable and isolated.

Meanwhile the meetings are continuing this week with different sessions taking place simultaneously on the various programs and aspects of the operation of IFRC.

 VRCS delegation to the important meeting include society President Ati George Sokomanu, CEO Mrs De Gaillande, VRCS Treasurer Moses Stevens, Organisational Development Coordinator Dickenson Tevi and VRCS Youth rep ElindaTaleo.