International Committee of the Red Cross
International Committee of the Red Cross

Regional Delegation for the United States and Canada

In This Issue:
Kyrgyzstan/Uzbekistan: ICRC Responds to Humanitarian Catastrophe
Annual Report 2009: Drawn-out Conflicts Require Sustained and Flexible Humanitarian Response
Working for the ICRC: What Does It Take
Help Out the Editorial Board of the International Review of the Red Cross
The latest ICRC news from around the globe
Our World At War: On the Move Out West
DRC - Ron Haviv, Our World at War
Our World At War is set to open June 25 at the Seattle Center in downtown Seattle, Washington, in cooperation with the American Red Cross Serving King and Kitsap Counties.
The show runs through
August 15 at the Harrison Street Gallery, located upstairs from the Food Court in the Center House (305 Harrison Street). The gallery is open every day from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. 
Many events open to the public have been organized relating to international humanitarian law and the impact of war on civilians. Visit the American Red Cross website to RSVP for these Seattle events.
Later in the year, the show will be back east.
Stay tuned for more dates and locations.
International Review of the Red Cross, 2009 - No. 876
International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent
Ever since it was first held in 1867, the International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent has been a unique forum for discussing issues of humanitarian concerns with the Movement of the Red Cross and Red Crescent and the States. The thirty Conferences held in more than 140 years bear witness to the birth and development of the law of war and the history of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. Humanitarian challenges, humanitarian norms, and the relations between governments and the Red Cross and Red Crescent form the backbone of the International Conference.

Red Cross, Red Crescent Magazine. Haiti: Emerging from the Ruins. No. 1, 2010
Red Cross, Red Crescent Magazine: Haiti
This edition pays tribute to Haitian Red Cross volunteers for their rescue and assistance efforts to help victims of the earthquake.
Other topics in this issue: restoring family links in the aftermath of natural disasters, tuberculosis in the prisons of Azerbaijan and Georgia, and the Movement takes up the challenge of urban violence.

Upcoming News & Events
Check our website for the latest news, as ICRC commemorates the upcoming dates with special features, photos, and more:
June 24: Anniversary of the Battle of Solferino
June 28 - July 8: 28th course on International Humanitarian Law in
Warsaw, Poland
July 12-30: HELP Course at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD
July 19 - August 6: HELP Course at Center of Excellence in Disaster Management & Humanitarian Assistance in Honolulu, HI
August 12: 61st Anniversary of the signing of the Geneva Conventions of 1949 
October 31 - November 6: Fourth Senior Workshop on International Rules governing Military Operations (SWIRMO) in Lucerne, Switzerland.

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The ICRC is an impartial, neutral, and independent organization whose exclusively humanitarian mission is to protect the lives and dignity of victims of war and internal violence and to provide them with assistance. 
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News and Notes
June 2010 

This month the ICRC Regional Delegation for the United States and Canada calls to your attention the unfolding events in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan and what the ICRC and the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement are doing to respond to humanitarian needs. 
Next, we look back at 2009 and share ICRC's Annual Report. The organization spent nearly $1 billion to address the humanitarian consequences of armed conflict worldwide. Many of these conflicts have gone on for years yet are rarely in the headlines.
Read on for a short summary of the different ways you might find employment with the ICRC. This article is a direct result of the feedback we received from our survey in January, in which many of you asked for exactly this topic: how to work for the ICRC. We hope it answers many, if not all, of your questions! 
And lastly, we ask for your help again! This time, take a short survey to help make the International Review of the Red Cross (our own academic journal) even more interesting and relevant to your work.
As always, we love hearing from our readers. Please keep in touch!
Kind regards,
The ICRC Washington Delegation
Kyrgyzstan / Uzbekistan: ICRC Responds to Humanitarian Catastrophe
Persons fleeing the violence in Kyrgyzstan wait to cross into Uzbekistan.
On June 14, the ICRC  launched a preliminary emergency appeal for 10 million Swiss francs to assist 100,000 people affected by violence in southern Kyrgyzstan over the next month.

The appeal comes as clashes, which started in the city of Osh on June 10, have continued to spread in the south of the country, including to the city of Jalal-Abad, prompting an estimated 80,000 people to flee their homes. More than 100 people have been killed and over 1,200 injured so far, according to Kyrgyz authorities, although the number of confirmed dead is likely to rise.

The ICRC will provide food for around 100,000 people in the coming month. One planeload of emergency medical supplies and body bags was airlifted to Osh on June 13. Twelve additional flights carrying a cargo of suture equipment, wound dressings, and other surgical materials as well as household items, such as jerrycans, buckets, and tarpaulins for 20,000 families, are scheduled to arrive in Osh in the coming days. Additional ICRC emergency personnel, including tracing, water, and emergency relief specialists, are also on their way. The ICRC is working closely with the Red Crescent Society of Kyrgyzstan to distribute urgently needed medical supplies to local hospitals.

To read more about this unfolding situation, click here and here.

Annual Report 2009: Drawn-out Conflicts Require Sustained and Flexible Humanitarian Response
ICRC's 2009 Annual Report 
On May 19, the ICRC released its 2009 Annual Report, which makes the case that the humanitarian response to contemporary armed conflicts must be better adapted to meet the complex needs of the people caught up in them.

"The consequences of long-lasting conflicts go well beyond what we often see in the headlines," said the ICRC's president, Jakob Kellenberger. "The uncertainty that comes with not being able to return home for years on end or the monotony of walking for hours, day in and day out, to fetch water, is not breaking news... It's the bullets and the bloodshed that make people sit up and take notice, but the problems don't stop when public attention shifts elsewhere, nor does our work as humanitarians."

In 2009 the ICRC evacuated wounded and sick people in Sri Lanka.Presenting the annual overview in Geneva, Mr. Kellenberger called on governments to redouble their efforts to minimize the humanitarian impact of armed conflict and other violence on civilians, adding that more pressure had to be brought to bear to ensure that warring parties adhere to international humanitarian law.

In total, the ICRC spent 1.06 billion Swiss francs (approximately $977 million) in 2009, down just slightly from an all-time high of almost 1.1 billion francs in 2008. Iraq, Sudan, Pakistan, and Afghanistan were among the organization's biggest operations last year, representing almost a third of the ICRC's overall expenditure. 
To download the entire report (5 MB), click here.
To view and download certain sections, click here.
To view a selection of photos from 2009 operations, click here.
Working for the ICRC: What Does It Take 
In response to our feedback survey conducted in late January, many of our readers asked for an article explaining the different career paths in the ICRC and just how one goes about applying.
More than 1,400 people, both specialized staff and delegates, are currently on field missions for the ICRC across the globe. Their work is complemented by the efforts of approximately 11,000 local employees in 80 countries and coordinated by around 800 staff at ICRC headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.  
ICRC Surgeon Operates Under the SunICRC staff members work in sensitive, tense, and sometimes dangerous situations, and in a wide range of settings, from government offices to the rudimentary facilities of camps for displaced persons. They move without pause from distributions of food rations to high-level negotiations with the military authorities. Priorities can change rapidly, so all ICRC personnel must be flexible and ready to work in the unfamiliar environment of a country at or emerging from war.

Above all, the ICRC seeks mature, motivated, team players who can interact with people from a variety of backgrounds and cultures, as well as resist stress and the difficult situations that cause it.     
Becoming an ICRC Delegate
An ICRC Delegate Interviews a DetaineeTo become an ICRC delegate, candidates must be between 25 and 35-years old and be proficient in English and French. Candidates should have at least 2 years of successful work experience before applying, and a university degree or its equivalent is generally required. 
To apply, interested persons can visit the ICRC's Human Resources page and create a personal account. If the application meets the selection criteria, it will advance to the next steps in the recruitment process, which will include the applicant visiting ICRC headquarters in Geneva for an in-depth interview. Written and oral language tests in English, French, and any other language mentioned in the application will follow. Successful candidates at this stage will be invited to a second and final assessment day in Geneva.
Unfortunately for job seekers, however, the recruitment of delegates is currently, temporarily restricted to Arabic, Russian, and Spanish speakers. Please consult our website for regular updates.
Technical Expertise Always in Demand 
An ICRC Water and Sanitation Engineer Works at a Site
The ICRC may also need people to fill posts with technical expertise. Positions commonly in demand include doctors, surgeons, nurses, engineers, mechanics, and translators. ICRC's Human Resources frequently updates its list of such vacancies online. The ICRC keeps applications on file from qualified candidates in case a vacancy arises. To have a good chance of being accepted, it is necessary to meet all the criteria for a given post.
Working for the ICRC's Washington Delegation
The ICRC opened its Regional Delegation for the United States and Canada in 1995. Thirty-two employees, representing a variety of nationalities, work with U.S. national authorities, multilateral institutions, civil society organizations, and the American and Canadian Red Cross to heighten awareness of and respect for international humanitarian law and the humanitarian work of the ICRC. 
As locally recruited positions become available within the delegation, they are posted on,, ReliefWeb, Foreign Policy Association Job Board, and the job boards of American, Georgetown, and George Washington universities. All positions in Washington are currently filled.  
Volunteering and Internships
Due to the nature of ICRC's work, the ICRC does not recruit volunteers. Candidates wishing to work as volunteers should contact the American or Canadian Red Cross. From time to time, however, ICRC headquarters offers remunerated internships for periods of 6 to 12 months. To learn more about these internship opportunities, please visit our website
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Participate in a Survey of the IRRC 
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