His Majesty The King awarded the National Order of Merit, Gold, to the Bhutan Red Cross Society (BRCS) at the 114th National Day celebration at the Tashichhodzong on 17 December.
The National Order of Merit was conferred to the Bhutan Red Cross Society (BRCS) in recognition of its exemplary service to the Nation by building a community of volunteers throughout the country. Their services have complemented the efforts of the State particularly during the pandemic.
BRCS was launched in 2017 under the leadership of its President, Her Majesty The Gyaltsuen, and was admitted to the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent in 2019. Since its inception, the BRCS has built a diverse community of volunteers totaling 4643 today.
Its membership across twenty-one branches comprise of volunteers from diverse backgrounds ranging from farmers, local leaders and civil servants as well as a group of taxi drivers.
During the pandemic, the BRCS has provided support wherever needed using its wide network of trained volunteers for delivering essential items and medical supplies as well as providing transport services to patients especially during the lockdowns.
The volunteers have played an invaluable role by helping to organize and manage the funeral rites of the deceased during the pandemic. Their prompt and caring services have enabled bereaved families to conduct proper funerary rites in accordance with health protocols and also grieve in dignity. The BRCS has helped to manage such rites for 287 deceased people from across the country.
Today BRCS focuses on emergency responses through the community response network of its volunteers. BRCS works closely with De-suung and other government agencies such as the Ministry of Health, Department of Disaster Management and also the district administrations.
The secretary general of Bhutan Red Cross Society (BRCS), Dragyel Tenzin Dorjee, shared his deepest gratitude to His Majesty The King on receiving the prestigious award.
“I rejoice this medal honour on behalf of the 21 branches and on behalf of the volunteers across the country. And sincerely submit our gratitude to His Majesty for such honour and recognition.”
He further added that BRCS will continue to play vital role in ensuring its auxiliary role to the state focusing on community responses. He stated, “As part of the BRCS Strategy 2030 one of the areas of core focus is in emergency responses.”
Meanwhile, BRSC has played a very important role during the pandemic’s first and second lockdown and the respective district lockdowns where they were involved in cremation ground services, kidu services, transportation of the patients discharged from JDWNRH to their respective homes across the country and even packing of meals for the discharged patient’s journey were included from Red Cross self-containment centers as per the Royal command from the President, Her Majesty The Gyaltsuen.