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ICRC materials are available from the International Committee of the Red Cross, 19 avenue de la Paix, CH-1202 Geneva, Switzerland.

International Federation materials are available from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, P.O. Box 372, CH-1211 Geneva 19, Switzerland. for the ICRC for the Federation


Megacities, reducing vulnerability to natural disasters
BInstitution of Civil Engineers, London,1995

Inspired by the 1990s, which were proclaimed by the United Nations as the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction, this book identifies ways in which urban developments are vulnerable to the effects of natural hazards and illustrates the strategies by which these effects can be miti-gated. It provides an overview of natural hazards, outlines the issues and strategies involved in mitigation, and discusses the roles that city management and public awareness play in reducing risk. It is intended for use in all cities and is aimed at the widest possible audience, since nearly everyone can contribute to successful disaster mitigation strategies.

Available in English from Thomas Telford Publications, Thomas Telford Services Ltd, 1 Heron Quay, London E14 4JD, UK.


Nutrition Matters
By Helen Young and Susanne Jaspars, Intermediate Technology Publications Ltd, London, 1995

Despite increasing experience underlining the importance of nutrition in emergencies, conventional nutritional wisdom applied today is still essentially based on technical considerations, not on practical experience. This work outlines contemporary views of famine and nutrition; describes nutrition in action, providing a detailed case study of nutritional surveillance in Darfur, Sudan, from 1984 to 1991; and elaborates a conceptual framework for understanding the relationship between nutrition and famine. One of the central aims of the work is to shed understanding about nutrition and famine from the perspective of insiders in an effort to render intervention more appropriate and effective.

Available in English from Intermediate Technology Pub-lications Ltd, 103-105 Southampton Row, London WC1B 4HH, UK.


Meeting Needs
NGO Coordination in Practice
By Jon Bennett, Earthscan Publications Ltd, London, 1995

There has been a phenomenal increase in the number, size and financial status of NGOs in the last 15 years. This increase has brought NGOs into closer collaboration with each other than ever before, yet coordination, particularly in situations of emergency, has often been regarded as peripheral to the main task of delivering assistance.

The introduction to this book explores recent trends in relief aid and is followed by eight case studies selected for their unique approach to NGO coordination at the field level.

In the foreword, the President of the International Council of Voluntary Agencies says: “At a time when the UN and other international agencies are in a state of crisis... this volume is a timely reminder of the responsibilities of the NGOs themselves to rationalise their own approaches to relief and development work in the years ahead.”

Available in English from Earthscan Publications Ltd, 120 Pentonville Road, London N1 9JN, UK. GB£13.95.


Focus on Humanity: A Century of Photography
By Nicolas Bouvier, Michèle Mercier and François Bugnion, Editions Skira, Geneva, 1995

Drawing extensively on the photographs in the ICRC’s archives, this book reflects the evolution of international humanitarian law and the role of visual images in humanitarian action. Based on photo reports from the time of the Crimean War up to the Second World War, the first part of the book traces the history of the Geneva Conventions. The second part draws on mostly unpublished photographs to illustrate wars since 1950 — in Korea, Viet Nam, Biafra, the Middle East, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and many other theatres of conflict. Together they are the record of a century marked by deeds of extreme heroism as well as utmost infamy, bringing hope as well as despair.

Available in English and French from the ICRC. Sfr 68 (Sfr 48 for National Societies).


Faith, Hope and Courage: the great strengths of refugees
By Diana Miserez-Willday, The Adelphi Press, London, 1995

Diana Miserez-Willday has spent most of her life working with and for refugees, including with UNHCR and the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. In Faith, Hope and Courage she paints a broad picture of many situations brought about this century by war, revolution, armed conflict and repression. Some of the chapters focus on the experiences of individual refugees. Others depict the work of the international agencies active in the field. She also provides an analysis of events reaching back in time which throws light on the instability of much of today’s world, which has forced so many men, women and children to lose all they possessed — except their particular strengths: faith, hope and courage.

Available in English from the Adelphi Press, 4-6 Effie Road, London SW6 1TD. Sfr 35.



Weapons: A Battle for Humanity
ICRC/Anglia Television Ltd., Norwich, 1995, 49 minutes 30 seconds

The effects of certain weapons have been so horrific that some governments have intervened to ban them.

This film shows weapons disasters in history and their aftermath. It investigates the problem of the use and the development of certain weapons and illustrates the human scale of weapons disasters in countries like Afghanistan and Angola. Victims, weapons manufacturers, scientists and mine-clearance experts are among the interviewees, as well as a Red Cross surgeon in a field hospital treating war casualties. Finally, it recalls the role of international legislation in preventing future weapons disasters.

Available in English from the ICRC.


Voices from the Aftermath
ICRC, Cairo, 1995, 27 minutes

This documentary film relates the moving stories of four women and children whose lives have been affected by war in Israel and the occupied territories, Lebanon and Iraq.

The victims tell their own harrowing versions of events: a boy of 12 shot and paralysed for life while riding his bike; a Palestinian woman who has no idea what has become of four of her sons arrested in 1982 in Beirut; a young woman who, arrested for security reasons, spent most of her pregnancy in prison, gave birth with her hands and feet handcuffed and whose child spent the first 18 months of her life in prison; and a doctor in a Baghdad hospital who has to treat patients without enough drugs and equipment and whose own son is suffering from a medical condition exacerbated by lack of protein.

The narrator is Faten Hamama, a grande dame of Egyptian cinema. She makes an emotional appeal, as a mother, to governments and armies to ensure a better respect for international humanitarian law and to spare others the suffering that those portrayed in the film have undergone.

Available from the ICRC in Arabic and English.


Italian Red Cross Museum
Italian Red Cross, Genova, 1995,
13 minutess

This video was produced to publicise the Italian Red Cross Museum, which has been in existence since 1986. It tells the story of the origins of the Red Cross, beginning with Henry Dunant and the Battle of Solferino. A special section is devoted to the Geneva Conventions, the Fundamental Principles and the dissemination of international humanitarian law. A brief glimpse of the museum’s halls and of some of the exhibits, which include objects, photographs and documents spanning 130 years of Italian Red Cross activity, gives a foretaste of what lies in store for the visitor.

Available from the Museo della Croce Rossa Italiana, Via Primo Cavalieri 14, 16014 Campomorone, Genova, Italy. ITL 12,000.



Human Quest

The Norwegian Red Cross has developed an interactive software programme which is a data bank, a form of entertainment, and a role-playing game all rolled into one. The idea is for players to put themselves in the place of a member of a minority ethnic group, and to resolve a humanitarian crisis.

The game’s hero is 17-year-old Jakac, who lives in the imaginary country of Lokaya, itself in the grip of internal strife and tensions between different ethnic groups. Having witnessed the abduction of his father, the young man resolves to find him, and players share Jakac’s frustrations as he runs up against the incomprehension of the police and is obliged to conduct his own investigation without any support.

The computer programme, called “Human Quest I”, is highly educational. And the accompanying data bank includes all kinds of information on the fundamental rights of the individual and the consequences of violations of these rights. It also provides users with a wealth of information on countries where internal conflicts are currently being fought.

The programme provides teachers with an extremely valuable tool for raising awareness of respect for human dignity, and can also be used by National Red Cross or Red Crescent Societies to spread knowledge of international humanitarian law.

Available in Norwegian and English from the Norwegian Red Cross. Approx. US$100.


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