Canadian Red Cross to increase investment in preparedness

    OTTAWA, June 17 /CNW Telbec/ - While the number of natural disasters in
2008 was the lowest in a decade, the number of people reported killed was the
second highest. According to the 2009 World Disasters Report, released by the
International Federation of Red Cross Red Crescent Societies, action before
disaster strikes can help reduce this deadly trend.
    The Canadian Red Cross will increase its fundraising efforts to support
programs that help vulnerable regions prepare for disaster.
    "Investments in prevention and preparedness activities are investments in
the future," says Conrad Sauvé, Secretary General, Canadian Red Cross.
"Between the global economic downturn and the increasing challenge of climate
change, that is the most effective and financially prudent way for vulnerable
countries to save lives."
    Pre-positioning emergency stocks, training volunteers, effective early
warning systems to alert people about danger and building the capacity and
resilience of communities are examples of effective ways to reduce the impact
and risks associated with disasters.
    In a recent report, approximately 60 per cent of Canadians surveyed by
Leger Marketing in February 2009 agreed that the creation of a Prevention and
Preparedness Fund fits with the Red Cross mandate. Based on this, along with
its importance globally, the Canadian Red Cross aims to increase risk
reduction programming in the coming years.
    Canadians can help ensure that the Canadian Red Cross is prepared to
respond quickly to disasters by supporting the International Disaster Relief
and Canadian Disaster Relief Funds, which allow the Red Cross to respond
within hours of an emergency. These funds are an essential lifeline to people
when they need help the most.
    To learn more about the Canadian Red Cross, disaster preparedness or the
2009 World Disaster Report, please visit

    The Canadian Red Cross is a member of the International Red Cross and Red
Crescent Movement, which includes the International Federation of Red Cross
and Red Crescent Societies, the International Committee of the Red Cross and
187 national Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Our mission is to improve
the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity in Canada
and around the world.

For further information:

For further information: Canadian Red Cross media line, (613) 740-1994

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