2018 marks the 150th anniversary of what is now the Turkish Red Crescent. Born as the Ottoman Red Crescent Society on June 11, 1868, the TRC (known as “Kizilayi” in Turkish) was the first Islamic-branded Federation organization recognized under the Geneva Conventions. In a dynamic evolution through the founding of the Turkish Republic to World War II, the Cold War, to modern times, the TRC has vaulted to the status of global humanitarian superpower–able to project humanitarian operations beyond the boundaries of Eurasia and Africa to as far away as the Western Hemisphere.
The BOA Directors were honored to be hosted by the Turkish American National Steering Committee on October 18 in Washington DC to present on this dynamic topic. The full audio of the event is below:
As an agile, well-equipped and highly organized national NGO, the TRC today finds itself engaged in complex emergencies at the cutting edge of geopolitics, including conducting operations in Idlib, Syria, in the Horn of Africa, and supporting the Rohingya. Yet the climate-catalyzed threat environment of the future includes exponentiating threats including Arctic Amplification, unprecedented heat, water, and agricultural stressors in the Middle East and North Africa, and an increase in severe meteorological events that could drive massive migration patterns in the coming years and decades.
BOA’s analysis suggested multiple approaches that a high-capacity humanitarian organization such as the TRC could take to plan for the exponential relief operations of the future. This includes exercising tabletop scenarios that call for a 3-5X increase in migration flows and severe weather events, conducting joint training with Federation partners in the region, ensuring deep supply chains of temporary sheltering capabilities, and exploring rugged, scalable shortwave communication technologies for optimal field use.
In summary, after a dynamic 150-year evolution, the TRC is well positioned to assume a leadership position in an exceptionally challenging and cascading threat environment.