Australian Red Cross has welcomed the Australian Government’s pledge overnight to double funding to the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) Disaster Response Emergency Fund (DREF).
Australian Red Cross International and Movement Relations Director Alex Mathieson responding to the announcement by the Minister for International Development and the Pacific Pat Conroy at the IFRC’s annual pledging conference in Geneva said,
“We thank Mr Conroy and the Australian government for the commitment to double to $1.5 million the government’s annual contribution to the DREF.
“The DREF is the IFRC’s global funding pool which enables early and fast local action at times of disasters.
“It has proved to be the simplest, quickest, most transparent and locally-driven way for Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies to access funds so they can swing into action when needs exceed the resources available locally, such as drought in the Horn of Africa and Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.
“Climate change has led to a rapidly rising number of small and medium sized disasters which are occurring more often and with increasing intensity. They also disproportionately affect vulnerable communities.
“Local and rapid responses are increasingly necessary and this will mean local Red Cross or Red Crescent organisations can receive much-needed additional support for their local communities who are, after all, best placed to plan for and respond to disasters. These funds will help them to respond quickly and at scale, particularly when responding to multiple crises.”
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