Thai Red Cross Society hosted the 18th Annual Southeast Asia Red Cross Red Crescent Leadership Meeting from September 16-17, 2021. The meeting was held virtually with a total of 110 delegates from 11 Southeast Asian National Societies, including Presidents and Secretaries General of: Brunei Darussalam Red Crescent Society, Cambodian Red Cross, Indonesian Red Cross, Lao Red Cross, Malaysian Red Crescent Society, Myanmar Red Cross Society, Philippine Red Cross, Singapore Red Cross, Thai Red Cross Society, Timor-Leste Red Cross, and Viet Nam Red Cross Society. Other participants and speakers included executives from the International Committee of the Red Cross, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the ASEAN Secretariat and ASEAN Coordinating Center for Humanitarian Assistance on Disaster Management (AHA Center).
The meeting was chaired by Mr. Tej Bunnag, Secretary General of Thai Red Cross Society. He delivered the opening remarks, followed by keynote speeches by Mr. Francesco Rocca, IFRC President, and Mr. Robert Mardini, ICRC Director General, on the first day. The second day was started by the dialogue with Mr. Jagan Chapagain, IFRC Secretary General.
Major topics of the meeting included Facing the Challenges of COVID – 19, Responding to, and Recovering from the Pandemic, Strengthening National Societies for Sustainability through Stepping Up Our Fundraising and Mobilizing Youth and Volunteers, Reviewing the Progress of the Outcome of the 17th SEA RCRC Leaders Meeting in Hanoi, Follow-up on Movement, Regional and Global Commitments, Updates on the Work of the SEA Networks, Preparations for Upcoming Statutory Meetings and the Elections of the Movement, Cooperation with AHA Center and ASEAN Secretariat. Among highlights was the special presentation on the development of ChulaCov-19 vaccine by Prof Kiat Ruxrungtham, M.D., Scientific Chair of the Chula Vaccine Research Center, Chulalongkorn University.
The meeting was concluded by an agreement on the outcome document “Bangkok Statement” and the handover of chairmanship to Brunei Darussalam Red Crescent Society which will host the 19th meeting in 2022.