The Cyprus Red Cross Society assisted more than 42,000 people with house deliveries of essential items during lockdowns, it emerged on Tuesday.
Talking about the charity’s action during the pandemic to AlphaNews, president of the society Photini Papadopoulou said about 42,000 people received help from Red Cross volunteers during the three lockdowns.
The service, launched on March 19 last year, targeted the elderly and those belonging to vulnerable groups who had difficulty accessing necessities including food and medicine.
“We also had other cases where we provided more specialised items, medicine or oxygen cylinders,” Papadopoulou said.
Another service, focusing on the mental wellbeing of the elderly, is the Let’s Talk helpline accessed by 6,500 people so far, the president added.
“Loneliness is difficult during self-isolation especially among the elderly,” Papadopoulou said.
The helpline is available on 22 504412 on a 24/7 basis.
The charity receives some funding from the state, but its main income comes from donations and their annual fundraiser. The fundraiser is taking place online this year, while its cancellation in 2020 was a huge financial blow.
But donations from large organisations helped support the Red Cross during the pandemic.
“It is important to feel that you can help others, it brings us joy,” the president said.
Papadopoulou called for public donations for Red Cross to be able to continue their charity work.
“The aim of Red Cross is to prevent and alleviate human suffering without any discrimination,” she added.
CRCS is the largest organisation of its type in Cyprus. Its history dates back to 1950 when volunteers operated as a branch of the British Red Cross. The Cyprus Red Cross Society was officially recognised by the International Committee Red Cross (ICRC) in 2012.