A century of helping out when disaster strikes

RED Cross Australia has celebrated 100 years in style at a conference in Warrnambool.

Red Cross chairman of zone 5 Andrew Squires (left) and ambassador Bob Handby at the Red Cross conference held in Warrnambool this week. 140807RG11 Picture: ROB GUNSTONE

Red Cross chairman of zone 5 Andrew Squires (left) and ambassador Bob Handby at the Red Cross conference held in Warrnambool this week. 140807RG11 Picture: ROB GUNSTONE

More than 60 attendees gathered for a luncheon this week and to listen to guest speakers, including long-time Red Cross worker Bob Handby.

Wednesday is Red Cross Foundation Day, marking 100 years since the Red Cross formed in Australia.

In that time, branches at Mortlake, Koroit, Merino and Warrnambool have been running continuously.

The event highlighted the everyday work of Red Cross which supports the most vulnerable members of the community during times of crisis and disaster, in Australia and abroad.

Attendees enjoyed the opportunity to mingle with other Red Cross volunteers, community members and private supporters. 

A Red Cross ambassador and water and sanitation international delegate, Mr  Handby delivered a rousing speech on his involvement with the organisation. He has volunteered and worked for the Red Cross for 30 years, first volunteering in 1974.

He has spent time in Rwanda, Uganda, Zimbabwe and the Pacific Islands and in 2012 he made 12 trips overseas.

Mr Handby was instrumental in developing Australia’s emergency response units.

Other speakers included Lexi Eaves and Jimmy Kyle.

Ms Eaves spoke on international humanitarian law while Mr Kyle talked about the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander strategy.

Bunnings stores across Australia will today host barbecues to benefit Red Cross.

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