Red Cross is celebrating the Kiwis making a difference across the globe this World Humanitarian Day. Marked on August 19, World Humanitarian Day recognises the efforts of aid workers responding to the world’s most urgent and critical humanitarian crises.

New Zealand Red Cross has trained and deployed aid workers since 1937. Red Cross aid workers are experts in their fields – medical professionals, engineers and IT&T specialists.

Red Cross Secretary General Tony Paine says the work Kiwis are doing to help communities in need is inspiring.

“This isn’t your typical nine-to-five job. Our aid workers are living in conflict areas or working with communities devastated by natural disasters. They’re treating gunshot wounds in South Sudan, helping families access clean water in Vanuatu and rebuilding homes in Fiji.

“It’s about more than just lending a hand – they are making a real difference for those who need it. Thanks to their efforts, vulnerable families have access to clean water, food, shelter and healthcare.”

In the past year, Red Cross’ Kiwi aid workers completed 74 missions in 26 countries. This includes areas recovering from natural disasters like Nepal, conflict-affected countries like South Sudan, Afghanistan and Ukraine, and communities throughout the Pacific.

New Zealand Red Cross deployed eleven aid workers to help in Fiji after Tropical Cyclone Winston in February. Aid workers are also supporting communities in Kiribati, the Marshall Islands, Vanuatu and Tonga.

Red Cross’ aid workers are supported by funding from Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, through the New Zealand Aid Programme and by generous donations to New Zealand Red Cross.

Part of the International Red Cross Red Crescent Movement, New Zealand Red Cross helps those who need it most, irrespective of religion, nationality or political opinion. To hear more about aid workers’ experiences in the field, view our overseas stories