Changing minds, saving lives and building resilience through values based education for all

Actions taken:

  • Overall contribution to the pledge

The British Red Cross offers a comprehensive humanitarian and first aid education offer for 5-19 year olds including resources that are used by teachers in schools on the topics of: disasters and emergencies, including emergency preparedness; first aid; conflict, including IHL the Geneva Conventions and WWI/WWII; refugees and migration; and humanitarianism, kindness and the power of volunteering.  We also offer resources that link to major UK news stories, helping teachers explore challenging topics with their students from a humanitarian angle – for example the Manchester attacks (, or the Humanitarian crisis in Mozambique ( We also offer targeted workshops for young people in specific geographical areas – this work is focused on first aid education and building mutual respect and understanding for refugees and asylum seekers. NB we also have a first aid education offer for adults, for this pledge I have focused on our work with children and young people.

  • 3 key facts and figures

In 2018:

  1. Online teaching resources for first aid education had total page views of 694,328
  2. Online teaching resources for humanitarian education had total page views of 227,112
  3. Face to face workshops delivered in targeted geographical areas reached 143,769 young people


  • 2 high resolution pictures with an extended caption

All of the British Red Cross’ teaching resources can be found here: – please note that the correct photo crediting must be used (available on each photo) and we should be contacted so we can advise on how long they can be used for and in what capacity.

  • 1 story of interest

The British Red Cross have long campaigned individually and as part of a coalition of other first aid education providers in the UK to have first aid education included on the National Curriculum in England.  This has now been achieved, with first aid education included in statutory guidance for primary and secondary schools – compulsory from 2020, alongside a wider health curriculum that also explores resilience and well-being. This is a landmark moment for the BRC – we are currently working on developing a new and revised first aid education offer linked to the new curriculum, this will be delivered by teachers and other educators to amplify our reach and to educate children and young people to help and assist when someone is in need of first aid, as well as to comfort and reassure them – building the power of kindness.


For the full story, please see our blog:


  • Possible challenges

The core work of our education is to help children and young people develop kindness and humanitarian values and skills to take positive action. We are currently going through a period of re-invention in education at the BRC so this is an opportunity and a challenge in redefining our approach to be relevant and impactful to our humanitarian mission. Our education offer centres around developing and enabling individual and community resilience.


Contribution to specific pledge action points

  • Pledge action point one: identify, develop and deliver programmes, projects and activities which nurture and develop the skills, knowledge and attitudes of children and youth to help and care for themselves and others, interact peacefully and reduce the vulnerability of their community.
  • 3 key facts and figures

Each year we create curriculum linked and evidence based online teaching resources, in 2018 and 2019 we developed and promoted a range of resources, below are three examples:


  1. 2019 Refugee week online teaching resource received a total of 4,382 page views. The resource for 7-14 year olds explores generations of migration and uses BRC films of young refugees stories to build empathy, understanding and interconnection. It also could be easily linked to the British Values and Citizenship programmes of study. linked to the citizenship and history programmes of study. It can be found at:

2018 Refugee week online teaching resource received a total of 3,438 page views. The resource for 7-14 year olds explores developing empathy and understanding for a shared future with people settling in the UK with refugee background. It used an inspirational film commissioned by the BRC showing the power of shared activities to bring communities together. It also could be easily linked to the British Values and Citizenship programmes of study. It can be found at:


  1. 2018 World War One: centenary resource – during the promotion period Sept – Dec 2018 the resource had 3,345 page views

This interactive teaching package for 11-16 year olds has three modules with a range of activities for teachers to pick and choose from. It uses powerful archive letters, case studies and photographs from the British Red Cross unique digitised archive so that young people can discover more about the valuable role volunteers played during WWI, the protections for those affected by war and how they can learn to help others. It also could be easily linked to the British Values and Citizenship programmes of study. It can be found at:


  1. In 2018, we evaluated a critical thinking pilot project in partnership with Cambridge University which reached 199 young people via their teachers in ten schools. This pilot is aimed at 14-19 year olds and was proven to increase critical thinking and empathy in order to counter extreme thinking of any type. It also could be easily linked to the British Values and Citizenship programmes of study.


  • 2 high resolution pictures with an extended caption





21 June 19



British Red Cross Society



Holly Butcher/British Red Cross



A learner, aged 9, considers which six essential items he would carry, as part of his learning from the British Red Cross Refugee Week resource.


Every year the British Red Cross creates free Refugee Week resources to support teachers to educate primary and secondary school pupils on cultures different to their own, and to help learners emphasise with those who have been forced to leave their homes.


  • 1 story of interest

The education team wrote a blog about a school who had used the 2018 refugee week resource. Red Cross research shows that young people want to know more about refugees and asylum seekers. It also found that 83 per cent believe that young refugees are just like them. When we spoke to a group of 13- and 14-year-olds at Park High School about their lesson, what shone through was their kindness towards refugees. View the full blog at:


  • Possible challenges

Challenges come with schools having less time to dedicate to topics outside of the curriculum, we ensure all of our resources are linked to specific curriculum subjects across the nations of the UK so teachers can quickly see the links and value of the resources to delivering their subject and helping their students to care for themselves and others, interact peacefully and reduce the vulnerability of their community.


Please find below a brief overview of new contributions to our interim report on this pledge:


  • Pledge action point two: Share values and skills-based education initiatives on the Humanitarian education learning portal (HELP community) and other online platforms, to learn from one another and develop action orientated initiatives and projects together.

The British Red Cross continues to share learning from values and skills-based initiatives through attending and inputting into HELP webinars and taking an active participatory role in the Humanitarian Education Network and coordination group to share learning from action orientated initiatives and projects.


  • Pledge action point three: include humanitarian values and skill-based education in relevant national policies, strategies, operational plans and to promote its integration into formal and non-formal educational curricula

All of our humanitarian education topics and first aid education are now on the curriculum in England, a landmark change this year sees first aid education become a statutory part of the curriculum in England for the first time (see information on this in the ‘overall contribution to the pledge section’).  We continue to work with the advocacy and international law teams at the BRC to look for opportunities to include other areas of our work on the UK curricula.  Non-formal education also offer opportunities to reach young people with humanitarian values and skill based education – the face to face delivery team work in the community to develop connections with organisations in location where young people will benefit most from our community education offer (see information on this in the ‘overall contribution to the pledge section’). Our new corporate strategy will see partnerships and community resilience taking a key role in continuing to explore the integration of education into external policies and strategies.


  • Pledge action point four: By 2019, all Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies reach out to children and young people with values-based humanitarian education through formal, non-formal and informal education channels

Please see earlier information on this in ‘overall contribution to the pledge’.


  • Pledge action point five: by 2019 at least 50% of National Societies and the International Federation have partnerships with public educational authorities and other stakeholders in the area of education.

The British Red Cross works with specific departments within government and engages key influencers such as ministers, as well as taking part in education consultations run by government to raise key points around the inclusion and benefit of humanitarian and first aid education to children and young people.  We also hold close working relationships with subject associations e.g. the Personal, Social, Health and Economic Association, and the Geographical Association to ensure our topics are relevant to teachers delivering specific subjects.  We ensure we work with partners to increase our voice and influence to contribute to education that builds community resilience.  We also work with university partners to carry out research, joint projects, pilots and initiatives and with numerous other stakeholders and partners across our topic areas e.g. Refugee week organisation, the UK Meteorology office, and our international Red Cross and Red Crescent colleagues.


  • Pledge action point six: The Movement components and States are committed to values-based education within their respective country, including through the inclusion of humanitarian values into relevant educational policies, strategies and operational plans, as well as curricula.

Please see note above on pledge action points three and five.


  • Pledge point seven: More than 50% of National Societies are actively involved and collaborate on values-based education initiative and share these on the HELP community.

The British Red Cross is an active member of the Humanitarian Education and Learning Portal (HELP) community and also recently work with the IFRC on the development of a Movement wide strategy for education alongside other National Society colleagues and the ICRC.

A final relevant point that contributes to our implementation of this pledge:

In December, primary-schools across the UK accessed Power of Kindness (POK) calendar from the British Red Cross website: The purpose of the calendar was to create awareness and engage teachers with our online resources. It also helped children learn about and carry out kind acts with a range of activities linked to our teaching resources. 838 schools registered for a POK pack, with an estimated reach of over 57,000 children.

Implementation completion:

The International Committee of the Red Cross, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and the Standing Commission of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, in its function as Trustee of the International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (the Conference), cannot be held responsible or liable in any manner for any user-generated content or posts on this Database. In the event that the Website team considers any post or content to be incompatible with the Fundamental Principles of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and/or with the objectives of the Conference, it reserves the right to remove such content.