It has been 60 years since Land Rover first began an association with the British Red Cross, and subsequently the IFRC.
The partnership was first forged in 1954, when Land Rover supplied a Series 1 Land Rover to the British Red Cross in Dubai as a mobile dispensary. The relationship was further cemented in 2007, as part of the development of Land Rover’s G4 Challenge. Since then its worldwide achievements include the loan and donation of 120 vehicles and the provision of direct help to over 900,000 people.
As well as celebrating 60 years since the relationship first began, this year the IFRC also celebrates over 150 years of humanitarian work. The celebration included a Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace, supported by Land Rover.
In 2008 Land Rover celebrated its 60th birthday by donating 60 vehicles to the Red Cross. These vehicles were distributed across the globe where they delivered vital supplies and emergency response to those in need.
One of the key projects of the partnership was the “Journey of Discovery” expedition in 2012. Land Rover made the a Uganda Red Cross sustainable water and sanitation project in Uganda the focus of an ambitious fund-raising activity to complete a 8,000-mile expedition to Beijing. This journey was completed by the one millionth Land Rover Discovery, which was built at Solihull, the home of Land Rover. The 50-day journey succeeded in its target of generating £1 million for the project and raising awareness of the vital work being done by the IFRC in the areas of water and sanitation.
To date the money has helped create seven new boreholes, provide essential education in personal hygiene and sanitation, train volunteers and publish information material. The project will provide direct help to more than 45,000 and indirectly benefit a further 66,000.
Mark Cameron, Jaguar Land Rover Global Brand Experience Director, said: “We at Land Rover are proud of our long association with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Earlier this year we committed to continue our support of the excellent work it does to bring help and relief to people in need by extending our partnership for a further five years.
“By working together through Jaguar Land Rover’s new Global Corporate Social Responsibility Programme, the IFRC is contributing towards the creation of opportunities for 12 million people in our local and global communities by 2020, combining specialist knowledge, innovation and shared expertise. The partnership will help to achieve this goal, delivering practical, sustainable help to communities and individuals worldwide.
“With the use of Land Rover vehicles we are also able to help the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies access remote territories that would otherwise be hard to reach. This is often where the most vulnerable people are and therefore need support.”
Olaug Bergseth, Strategic Partnerships Manager, IFRC, said: “Reaching Vulnerable People Around the World is a unique partnership. To have such an effective, longstanding partnership with one of the world’s most iconic brands makes us very proud, and we look forward to seeing the initiative develop to reach more communities around the world, which need both long-term support and help during times of disaster and emergency.”