May 8th marks World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day, a date celebrating the anniversary Henry Dunant's birth in 1828. Dunant was the founder of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the recipient of the first Nobel Peace Prize.
Officials from the Afghan Red Crescent Society took the opportunity to organize local events and encourage volunteerism.
In Kabul, former minister of social affairs Amina Afzali spoke at the Red Crescent event and stressed Afghanistan's dire needs when it comes to humanitarian aid.
"The Afghan red crescent society and the international community of the red cross succeeded in remaining alongside the people of Afghanistan for a long time and never hesitated to provide assistance," Afzali said.
The gathering was also addressed by the chairperson of the Afghan Red Crescent Society, Fatima Gillah.
"The Afghan red crescent society was established under the late Zahir Shah, and he provided lands for the society, which are now rented, and every month we receive 200,000 to 300,000 USD from renting these assets," Gillani said.
Participants of the gathering emphasized the Red Crescent Society's commitment to building public trust and reach the most needy populations, such as children. Nevertheless, officials did not shy away from expressing their concerns about the security threats facing humanitarian workers in Afghanistan.
"The challenges are still very complex, and right now natural disasters are affecting the lives of Afghan people across rural and urban areas," ICRC representative Monica Cheralani said.
Volunteers serving in the Afghan Red Crescent Society attended the event and reiterated their readiness to work around the clock to reach the most vulnerable Afghan citizens.
"People are in dire need of cooperation, therefore we, the youths, should do our best to support them based on our potential," a volunteer named Marina told TOLOnews.
"I am a student and registered here to contribute to humanitarian work that is needed by the people," another volunteer named Matiullah said. "My message to the people is to fully support these efforts," he added.
The Afghan Red Crescent Society was established in 1929. Over the years, the organization has been particularly successful, with help from government funding, at addressing the issue of heart disease among Afghan children.
President Ashraf Ghani has requested that the Indian government provide one million USD in financial support for the Afghan Red Crescent annually for a duration of five years.