First Lady Weah Pays Tribute to Liberia National Red Cross Society... As Liberia Observes World Humanitarian Day
Monrovia, Liberia - First Lady Clar Marie Weah has praised the Liberia National Red Cross Society for its numerous humanitarian initiatives aimed at restoring hope and bringing relief to thousands of residents across the country.
Mrs. Weah paid tribute to volunteers and staffers of the Red Cross Society, stressing that they risk their lives just to extend humanitarian assistance to those in dire need.
She said such courage and love for humanity, as demonstrated during the Liberian civil crisis, the ebola pandemic as well as in times of disasters, are commendable.
The Liberian First Lady made the statement Monday, August 19, 2019, when she paid a visit at the Headquarters of the Liberia National Red Cross Society in Monrovia, in commemoration of World Humanitarian Day.
World Humanitarian Day (WHD) is held every year on 19 August to pay tribute to aid workers who risk their lives in humanitarian service, and to rally support for people affected by crises around the world. This year, the spotlight is placed on women humanitarians, celebrating their efforts which add so much more value to the global humanitarian response.
“In regards to World Humanitarian Day, I could not have seen this day gone by without coming here to thank you all for the great job you are doing for Liberia,” said Mrs. Weah.
“I know during the ebola crisis many of you, the humanitarian aid workers; many of the women of Liberia risked their lives and possibly the lives of their families to reach out to people who were in need. And that’s commendable.”
She recognized the work of women humanitarians, whom according to the United Nations, make up a large number of those who risk their own lives to save others around the world; often being the first to respond and the last to leave.
Mrs. Weah said, growing up as a child, she had always seen humanitarian institutions at work, something she noted, might have ignited the passion for serving humanity which was imbued in her by God.
She quickly recounted her many humanitarian interventions through the Office of the First Lady and the Clar Hope Foundation in an effort to help improve the lives of the underprivileged people.
Paramount among the projects mentioned were the renovation of several orphanages, the provision of regular food and non-food supplies, monthly feeding of the elderly, construction of the home of the elderly and physically challenged which is nearing completion and the city of hope now underway.
“Serving humanity has been a part of me. I cannot see myself being a First Lady of the Republic of Liberia without helping my people,” said Mrs. Weah.
“As I have always said, I wasn’t pushed to do all this. When I became First Lady there was no inscriptions stating what I needed to do. I am doing what my heart has led me to do and I think it’s important for me and the Liberian people.”
Mrs. Weah added that though such efforts could not match the work of the Red Cross, it was important everyone does their part in supporting the Red Cross meet the humanitarian needs of Liberians as no one person or institution could do it all alone.
The Liberian First Lady, however, urged the Red Cross to continue its good work while committing her willingness and readiness to collaborate with the institution in addressing the huge humanitarian needs of Liberia.
For his part the President of the Liberia National Red Cross Society, Mr. Jerome N. J. Clark II, expressed gratitude over the First Lady’s visit, particularly on World Humanitarian Day.
Mr. Clark said Mrs. Weah’s visit was not a surprise, adding that it did not only demonstrate her interest in humanity and the work they do but also her desire to partner with the Red Cross in alleviating human sufferings in Liberia.
“Yes, we are not experiencing major emergency and getting funding from international donors is challenging, but access to safe drinking water, improved sanitation, flooding and fire disasters, support to women and community healthcare are very crucial and uncompromising at the moment,” said Mr. Clark.
He highlighted the ongoing programs and projects of the Red Cross and called for a stronger partnership with the First Lady in addressing Liberia’s humanitarian needs together.
Following her brief interaction with the leadership of the Liberia National Red Cross at its head offices in central Monrovia, the First Lady was taken on a guided tour to the Red Cross Skills Training Program for women in Paynesville.
Mrs. Weah met with the young ladies who are being trained in various life skills and admonished them to take the opportunity seriously so as to improve their lives and become self-dependent.
For their part, the girls thanked the First Lady for the encouragement and promised to do their best.