The economic crisis of 2008 is still resonating in many countries of Europe and Central Asia. In recent years, budget cuts and the economic slowdown have led to increasing levels of poverty as well as unemployment among a growing number of people in the region.
The humanitarian landscape has become ever more complex due to a series of other factors such as natural disasters and conflicts. In addition, an unprecedented number of migrants are fleeing persecution, war and extreme poverty in other parts of the world, seeking safety on European shores. As a result, hundreds of thousands of people have travelled to Europe this year, with many landing in Greece - a country whose people are already challenged by the effects of the economic crisis.
Throughout this period of uncertainty, the International Federation for Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has published a series of reports seeking to inspire National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies to incorporate a more holistic approaches when tackling the humanitarian needs in the region.
The recently published “Growing Vulnerabilities in Europe and Central Asia” report is a follow up to the “Europe in Crisis – Think Differently” report, providing updates on the humanitarian needs and the Red Cross and Red Crescent response in the region. The report was produced in cooperation with the Centre for Policy Studies at the Central European University in Budapest and it presents evidence of the Red Cross and Red Crescent actions and patterns in cooperation with stakeholders in the areas of migration, volunteering and social action. “Growing Vulnerabilities” also provides recommendations on how to improve the collective Red Cross and Red Crescent response in adapting to the economic vulnerabilities and humanitarian needs of the future.
The “Europe in Crisis – Think Differently” report published in 2013 outlined the key humanitarian challenges resulting from the economic crises and proposed advocacy actions, providing the foundation for the commitments made by European National Societies in the Florence Call for Action.