Maltese Red Cross Society equipped to help 300 people at a time in case of emergency
There’s a Maltese saying that goes “if you expect the worst, you won’t be disappointed.” These words are the ethos of the Maltese Red Cross Society which is celebrating its 30th anniversary in Malta. With a fleet of 20 ambulances and emergency cars, and 100 people – among them volunteers and employees, over the years the society has trained hundreds of people in first aid and assisted in various operations both in Malta and in humanitarian crises.
The Malta Red Cross Society carries out humanitarian work, including cases of emergency, assisting in various events, and offering first aid training among other things.
It’s Maltese headquarters are in Pembroke. The President, Edward Gruppetta, explained that throughout its 30 years in Malta, great advances have been made.
“Today we have a much bigger place where we can meet, carry out training and store the things we need for any eventuality.”
Mr Gruppetta explained that on a regular basis, the Maltese Red Cross Society collaborates with authorities such as the Department of Health and Civil Protection. He said that there is a system in place so that in case of need they are asked to assist both on land and at sea.
During the pandemic, the Maltese Red Cross Society adapted to the circumstances by providing online first aid training and also helped with swab tests.
“Apart from the training we had a clinic inside the place where migrants are staying. There we got the Department of Health because certain things in the clinic we were doing ourselves with our own people, such as -swabbing. ”
With the immigrants, the Society also works on a project called Restoring Family Links, where in collaboration with people abroad it tries to get in touch with relatives of immigrants who have arrived in Malta to tell them that they are in good health.
Kieron Gulton has been working for the Maltese Red Cross Society for 7 months. He is in charge of the ambulance service.
“To coordinate covering events such as Malta Marathon for example, things like that, and also to patient transport, emergency services in the summer, we spend a lot of time with regards to assisting people on the beaches through the summer.”
At its headquarters, the Society is equipped to help 300 people at a time in the event of a national emergency. This equipment includes tents, beds and hygiene items. The President said that the largest humanitarian aid mission outside Malta in which the Society took part was in 2004 when the tsunami in Asia occurred and more than 227,000 people died. At that time, the Malta Red Cross Society helped build 64 houses and a clinic.