Australia works with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) because it is one of the world's largest and most respected humanitarian organisations. ICRC protects the lives and dignity of people affected by conflict. It can reach people in need in the most difficult environments, such as protecting people affected by fighting in Syria, or providing life-saving healthcare in rural Afghanistan.
In 2018-19 Australia provided $27.5 million in core funding to the ICRC to:
- protect and assist civilians affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence
- promote and strengthen adherence to international humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles through training and advocacy
- support the ICRC to deliver emergency medical assistance, food, water and shelter for millions affected by conflict and violence.
In 2018, the ICRC provided food aid, food production support and household items to 17.9 million people. It also supported 399 hospitals and 464 primary health care centres, and helped build and maintain critical infrastructure benefitting 34.9 million people.
ICRC has a mandate in international law to protect the lives and dignity of people affected by conflict and other situations of violence and to provide them with assistance. The organisation also works to promote and strengthen international humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles.