This Week in Restoring Family Links News

Do you follow @intlfamilylinks (Restoring Family Links’ account) on Twitter? See an interesting article but just don’t have the time to read it? “This Week in RFL News” is a weekly blog segment that highlights and summarizes some of the news items posted by RFL’s twitter.

After six years of separation due to war, the Indian Red Cross Society reunites family.

After six years of separation due to war, the Indian Red Cross Society reunites family.

World Red Cross Red Crescent Day: This week’s celebration was highly promoted on both Twitter and the RFL blog. On the blog we heard Restoring Family Links stories from Ireland, Bulgaria, and South Africa. There were also stories about what the American Red Cross is doing to educate US youth about refugee issues as well as celebrate and promote the fundamental principles of the Red Cross movement. In addition to these stories though, we also promoted this year’s celebration in the Philippines along with several stories from the nation on the recovery progress being made after last year’s Typhoon Haiyan. Around the globe the Red Cross Movement continues to make a humanitarian impact from reconnecting families in India through the Indian Red Cross Society to improving the health conditions of detainees in Mali.

Burma: Last Saturday, May 3rd, was World Press Freedom Day. While recent reforms in Burma have improved the freedom of citizens to discuss and report on political, social, and cultural happenings within the nation, many advocates highlight the continued need for improvement as much of the public still feels barred from expressing itself. Many activists have used the opportunity of a freer press to encourage the conflict parties within the Burma to end violence. This includes peaceful demonstrations made by activists of varying faiths coming together to promote peace between Buddhist, Muslim, and Christian communities. Outside of the nation, many Burmese rights advocates and refugees frequently contribute to public awareness on issues in Burma. One teen recently screened his documentary about unaccompanied migrant refugees fleeing violence in the nation. As the nation continues to build its democracy, it is important to voices like these to be heard in order to strengthen the peacemaking process.

Story Campaign 2014 Update: The winner of April’s special recognition for the 2014 Story Campaign has been selected! Cassie Schoon contributed two stories this past month for the story campaign: one, highlighting the work of her chapter to promote international humanitarian law and another recognizing a local volunteer for her dedication to the Restoring Family Links program. In addition to the small prize every story contributor receives, Cassie will receive a certificate of recognition and one of her stories will be featured on redcross.org.

And the Story Campaign continues! There are still two months left to submit your Restoring Family Links story. For more information on the campaign or to submit a story, please email Jon Dillon at jonathan.dillon@redcross.org.