The Lebanese Red Cross gathers thousands of volunteers qualified to provide services for the most vulnerable and needy people of the Lebanese society. It is considered the largest national humanitarian organization. The Lebanese Red Cross has developed its work and activities to meet national needs for more than 50 years (since 1945).
Today, the activities include: Dissemination of the International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Youth Summer Clubs, Annual Child Festival, Remedial Courses, Environmental Activities, Training the Youth to Non-Violence, Prisons and Juvenile Center Programs, Rest Houses Visits, Celebration of the International Volunteers Day, Income Generating Activities (fund-raising campaigns, seasonal cards, car wash, paper manufacturing..) and recruitment of Volunteers. A group of trained specialists supervise the implementation of these activities.
Disseminating the values and principles of the International Humanitarian Law:
This activity includes explanation about the genesis of the International Movement of the Red Cross and Red Crescent and its components and introducing the Lebanese Red Cross and disseminating and promoting its aims, actions, and the main principles for the international movement of the Red Cross and Red Crescent in addition to promoting and explaining the values and principles of the International Humanitarian Law ( Geneva convention, additional protocols, and other international conventions related to humanitarian actions).
Promoting the Humanitarian Norms and Values:
It is an activity that lays under the public education and calls for tolerance and solidarity, and understanding and respecting others through organizing a variety of activities addressed to youth and children. This activity is considered a vital activity because of the suffering and hardship that faced Lebanon and left a negative impact in its community in many respects. A highly skilled volunteers works on its implementation which enables them to carry out the tasks assigned to them.
Youth summer clubs:
These clubs are responsible for training the youth (5 to 12 years) to correct health and environmental behavior, to a healthy diet and to prevention against home accidents by using from children to parents method (this activity is considered as an opportunity to recruit new volunteers). All this is achieved through activities, games and songs stressing the importance of cooperation, respect, patriotism, children’s rights, self-expression, abiding by the rules, public and personal hygiene, and respect for the capacities of others.
In summer, the clubs recruit a group of young people (male and female), aged between 16 and 20 years, where they’re trained to be animators. Then, a place is chosen for the club for a period of 15 to 20 days ending in a festival where artwork is displayed as well as the craft exhibition prepared by the youth during the time of the club.
Prisons and correctional facilities:
Aimed at training specialized volunteers and staff from LRC, who possess the necessary skills to help prisoners and young delinquents improve the sanitary and psychological conditions of their detention, provide them, according to the possibilities, with crafts raw materials and with necessary information to maintain good health, clean environment and hygiene which will help later on with their integration onto the society In addition to educational programs and health and social awareness.
The Lebanese Red Cross organizes free and private remedial courses for students who have learning difficulties at schools. Volunteers give courses during sessions organized periodically or according to the need.
The volunteers of the society organize various awareness programs which include: environmental which aims to introduce the Lebanese community to the various environmental components and its effect in our daily life and spread a good environmental behavior especially between young people and youth through organizing workshops, seminars, national and local campaigns for warning from the environmental risks in the region and world like climate change, water problems and others… in collaboration with interested municipalities and associations. The LRC also cares for rising awareness in the society, especially for youth, about Aids and sexually transmitted diseases through preparing trainees and consultants in order to transfer awareness and education through same age people, and organizing national campaigns, seminars, workshops, and flyers distribution and other direct and indirect means. Aiming to decrease the number of pedestrian and car accidents victims especially the youth, the volunteers organize various campaigns in schools and universities in particular and local community in general for the dissemination of traffic safety and sense of responsibility and for the warning from the risk of disobedience of traffic laws through visual and audio devices. In addition to this, the LRC organizes and participates in the national health campaigns which aim to aware the community to avoid diseases, epidemics, and viruses in order to build good and healthy community.
Visits to elderly people and Rest Houses:
The Youth Department volunteers visit Rest Houses periodically and they organize recreational activities for the elderly to compensate for what they have been missing. The young volunteers help these old people keep their homes clean. They also paint their houses and provide them monthly with food, medicine, and clothes.
Income generating activities:
-Annual Fund-Raising Campaign:
It aims at collecting donations from citizens in all parts of Lebanon. It is one of the main financial resources of the Lebanese Red Cross.
It is launched by a central press conference held on the eve of May 8th of every year. It is accompanied by various publicity and information programs and by the collection of funds from the public in streets, at schools, religious centers, shops and banks.
- Greeting cards, parties and festivals: Various art festivals, parties and fairs are organized to collect funds to finance humanitarian programs and activities. Greeting cards are sold to finance certain programs.
- Car wash: this activity is done in collaboration with gas stations that offer their venue for free. It aims at financing humanitarian activities organized by certain Youth Centers.
International days and conferences:
Organizing and participating in conferences, seminars, workshops, and clubs dealing with humanitarian affairs and active participation in the global campaigns launched by the international movement of the Red Cross and Red Crescent societies at the Lebanese and world level.
Volunteers are recruited based on the practical needs of the Society. This is done through announcements at the centers or related institutions, or simply through individual and personal initiatives. People who want to volunteer have to be interviewed and trained about the Lebanese Red Cross principles, values and regulations. They also have to be trained on the kind of activity they’re volunteering for.