Introduction to the Emergency Response Unit (ERU)

The Emergency Response Unit Benelux is staffed by volunteers from Red Cross divisions in Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg. It is one of the 35 ERU teams which constitute the Global ERU team. This team intervenes in the event of a disaster. The Global Team was established in the 1990s by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

The Emergency Relief Unit Benelux is the result of the collaboration between 4 national Red Cross societies:

  • The Belgium Red Cross (Flemish-speaking community)
  • The Belgium Red Cross (French-speaking community)
  • The Netherlands Red Cross
  • The Luxembourg Red Cross

When a natural disaster occurs, the local Red Cross evaluates the situation on the ground. If destruction caused by the disaster exceeds its own capacities to intervene, the local Red Cross calls upon its partners for assistance. After this call for help to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the International Federation analyses the request and the need for humanitarian assistance. The national societies, amongst them the Luxembourg Red Cross, are then called upon to intervene in these locations. Finally the ERU Benelux must inform the International Federation if it is ready and able to assist in each particular case. The team, consisting of 4 or 5 volunteers, is given 48 hours to prepare for departure to the disaster location.

The ERU “Relief” ensures the correct distribution process of supplies sent by the Red Cross Movement following the initial call by the International Federation.

Once on site, the ERU Benelux intervention team must:

  • Evaluate the urgency of the situation and identify the people most gravely affected by the disaster
  • Determine requirements and identify areas most urgently needing assistance, all in close collaboration with the teams of the international and national Red Cross Federations
  • Develop a course of action for the relief sector
  • Rapidly assemble teams of the National Operating Society (NOS)
  • Dispatch and distribute aid to specified locations

The Luxembourg Red Cross seeks volunteers to strengthen its ERU.

  • Interested Individuals must:
  • Be readily available and have a flexible schedule
  • Be highly motivated
  • Be able to work in a team and have a strong team spirit
  • Possess good organisation skills
  • Be autonomous while working with and coordinating volunteers
  • Speak both French and English.

If you believe that you fit this profile and project and if you wish to help, please contact the humanitarian department at the Luxembourg Red Cross.

Contact: Clara Bretin

T. : 27 55-8009

E. : clara.bretin@croix-rouge.lu


Shortlisted individuals must follow a basic course on the Red Cross Movement and the Red Cross to be able to participate in a training course with the specific aim of becoming an ERU delegate.