Riverside relay celebrates 71 years of the Red Cross

A riverside walking and cycling relay was held on Tuesday morning along both sides of the Huangpu River in celebration for the 71th World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day.

A riverside walking and cycling relay was held by the Red Cross Society of China and Shanghai government Tuesday morning in celebration of the 71st World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day.

The relay, with 2,200 Red Cross workers, members, volunteers, and teenagers participating, took place on both sides of the Huangpu River and connected the riverside lanes of five districts, with a total length is 25 kilometers.

An exhibition of the history and culture of the Red Cross was provided at the event's main venue, as well as booths showing the works of local Red Cross branches and providing medical counseling services. Residents could also sign up to volunteer with the Red Cross on site.

At the start and end of each lane, the district Red Cross branch provided different services including healthcare and first aid education, hematopoietic stem cell and body donation registration, and free blood pressure and blood glucose measurements.

Whether during times of war or peace, or even during severe natural disasters or emergencies, millions of Red Cross members help to protect human life and health as well as promoting world peace and development, said Chen Zhu, vice-president of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

Ying Yong, mayor of the city, said Shanghai is the birthplace of the Red Cross Society of China and the origin of the nation's Red Cross campaign. He hopes the Red Cross Society of China's Shanghai branch can serve as a helpful assistant to the Party and government in the field of humanism.

At the opening ceremony, Wu Gang, a chief physician at Huashan Hospital and the leader of China's first Red Cross foreign aid medical team, shared the team's experiences of providing medical assistance services in Pakistan.

"We left for Gwadar in Pakistan in September last year. In the half-a-year foreign aid mission, we overcame difficulties like extreme heat, tough living environments and a poor security situation, and constructed and ran a medical emergency center, which brought huge relief," Wu said.

Ni Shiyuan is a 13-year-old student from Shanghai Nanhui Experimental School in the Pudong New area who joined the relay with her classmates. 

"For me, the Red Cross is not only a flag but also the spirit," Ni told Shanghai Daily. "It brings us hope and strength for the future of China, so I believe it was a very meaningful event."

Another participant, surnamed Wang, who is a member of the city's Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) team, said it's necessary to promote first aid knowledge in society through such events. 

"If everybody knows how to give first-aid, there would be less worry when an emergency happens."

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