Over the past two years, more than 700,000 people have fled Rakhine State, Myanmar to seek safety in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Many arrived injured, malnourished, and devastated. They speak of dangerous journeys—walking days on end to reach the border and losing touch with family members along the way. Once in Bangladesh, they crowd into camps on muddy hillsides and live in structures made of bamboo, plastic, cardboard and sometimes corrugated metal sheeting.
Monsoon rains and dangerous cyclone seasons put migrants at risk of landslides, floods, and destructive wind. Despite harsh conditions—and because there’s no possibility of evacuating the displacement camp during cyclones—migrants are volunteering to help their neighbors during natural disasters and other emergencies.
The American Red Cross has been working alongside global Red Cross and Red Crescent teams to provide lifesaving aid to the families. We are training migrants on first aid, early warning systems, and other skills so they can respond to rain, wind, flooding, landslides, and cyclones. As part of the Bangladesh government’s Cyclone Preparedness Program (CPP), the American Red Cross, Bangladesh Red Crescent, and IFRC are training thousands of camp residents and local (host) community members. In addition, the Red Cross supports disaster simulation drills and equips volunteers to warn fellow residents of danger via megaphones, a flag system, and even loudspeakers at mosques.
Content originally published on American Red Cross YouTube Channel.