What we do

  • Emergency response
  • Social aid
  • Health
  • Training
  • International aid

Emergency response


Every year, nearly 5 million people have an accident requiring emergency aid. More than 10,000 voluntary first aid workers are on hand to give first aid before paramedics arrive on scene. Our civic commitment goes even further and we provide both partial and full training to over one million people in first aid every year. 

First aid units

Whatever type or size of event (e.g. festival, match, concert etc) we are responsible for people’s safety by providing on-site general healthcare

Disasters : Emergency aid and follow-up

Our staff are deployed immediately to assess victims’ needs and set up support in various ways including provision of emergency housing shelters, reception centers offering a warm and friendly environment for victims, home visits to lonely people, food distribution and psychological support etc. We also provide local long-term support to help affected communities. 

Disaster planning and life-saving training

So as to best prepare communities for disasters and one-off emergencies, we offer a wide range of training courses to the general public. Everyday accidents, individual or group emergencies, life saving for children and infants, independence in old-age – these courses are available to everyone and aim to reduce public vulnerability.  

Social aid


Several million French people live below the poverty line. Every year, poverty is affecting more types of people (poorly paid workers, young people, single-parent families, OAPs, etc.) and this presents new challenges for our organisation. 

The elderly

In order to tackle loneliness among the elderly, we set up programmes designed to counter isolation and avoid risks from dependency, so as to preserve the quality of life of old people and their carers.

Food, financial and material aid

Every day we see more evidence that having a job is no longer a guarantee of security. There are nowadays three new social groups besides the homeless, who are forced to claim benefits: young people, the elderly and poorly paid workers. Our volunteers work to prevent people in insecure situations from dropping out of society by providing:   

  • Food
  • Clothing
  • “Red Cross on Wheels” - mobile aid service for people living in isolated areas
  • Access to energy  (tackling fuel poverty) - prevention, mediation and financial aid
  • Access to culture and leisure activities  
Advocacy and access to rights

Our teams are constantly on hand, providing help to vulnerable people, establishing a social life and coaxing them back to independence:

  • Finding places to live
  • Personal micro-credit and banking inclusion
  • Tackling illiteracy, learning the language
  • “Croix-Rouge Ecoute”: telephone helpline offering general and psychological support 
Social exclusion

We strive to provide specialist aid for people living on the streets, offering them shelter or lodgings and a long-term welfare plan tailored to their individual needs.

  • Mobile emergency and social services: advocacy and orientation
  • Temporary shelter and purpose-built accommodation
  • Access to healthcare and hygiene facilities

Every year, tens of thousands of refugees seek asylum in France, trying to to find their families, obtain better living conditions or flee from danger in their own countries. The Red Cross is a symbol of protection and offers a guarantee of basic rights and needs to refugees. Particular attention is paid to unaccompanied foreign children helping them rebuild their lives. 

Prison inmates

The Red Cross supports rehabilitation programmes for prison inmates.  Without casting judgment, we strive to promote social contact and discussion. We mainly focus on:

  • Protecting family links
  • Familiarising people with their judicial sentences
  • Social and cultural events
  • First-aid training
Emergency situations

Thanks to its status as a government body, the Red Cross can react quickly at a local level to provide aid to people in emergency situations. Every year our teams of volunteers are also involved in developing strategies for extreme weather conditions, i.e. freezing temperatures and heatwaves. 



The French Red Cross is in the unique position of providing virtually all healthcare and social welfare services. Our aim is to ensure that everyone has access to treatment and quality social support.


Our facilities are local and offer treatment to everyone.

  • Our healthcare facilities are mainly adapted to aftercare and rehabilitation and prioritise returning home.
  • Our local health centres that are run entirely by healthcare professionals are for treatment and disease prevention and do not accommodate patients. Open to everyone, they help combat social inequality in healthcare.

There are six million disabled people in France and there are still unresolved issues about their place in society. This is why the Red Cross strives to improve how they are treated while investing in innovative projects. 

  • Disabled children: education is a basic right for all children.  It has to be organised and structured with teaching care and support tailored to their special needs.
  • Disabled adults: so as to provide support wherever possible for disabled people at home, we encourage personalised projects, split between "the home package" and the "residential package". We can provide emergency, respite or day care.
  • Employment: the Red Cross manages organisations set up to employ disabled people in normal jobs.
The elderly

With the increase in life expectancy, dependency in old age has turned into a major national issue.  We make sure we  tailor our care packages for the elderly to individual needs and offer all types of care: with or without nursing care, temporary or permanent accommodation, day care, etc. All our solutions allow as much independence as possible for the elderly.

Home support and care

We are constantly engaged in the search for a complete home support and care package to allow elderly dependents to stay as independent as possible.

  • Home support: we offer home support with services tailored to individual needs, allowing everyday life to continue as smoothly as possible.
  • Home care: we provide a full range of nursing care, as well as personal comfort and hygiene care based on prescription.



As a key health and social training provider, the French Red Cross also lays on a wide range of health and safety training in the workplace in line with the requirements of the most varied working environments:

  • Healthcare and social professions : as pioneer in health and social education and having set up the first ever nursing courses, we provide initial and on-the-job training nationwide so as to satisfy healthcare and social needs as best as possible. 
  • Health and safety in the workplace : Psychosocial risks from physical activity, health and safety rules, life-saving etc - our organisation offers a complete training package to reduce risk in the workplace and its consequences.

In June 2014 we were certified ISO 9001 for our quality management procedures with regard to “design and development of training services in healthcare, social care, welfare and workplace health and safety”.

Erasmus exchange programme

International aid


When a country is hit by a natural disaster or torn apart by armed conflict, our emergency response units are deployed immediately, and after the emergency, we set up a wide range of humanitarian programmes to improve access to water and ensure secure food supplies and healthcare to vulnerable people.

  • Preparing for disasters : we have set up training programmes to reduce the impact of disasters on local people.
  • Emergency response : emergency response units (ERU), regional emergency hubs (in the Indian Ocean, Caribbean and South Pacific)
  • Psychosocial support : help and guidance for disaster victims
  • Healthcare : building and improving health centres, training paramedics, tackling malnutrition etc.
  • Water and sanitation : ensuring access to drinking water, promoting mass sanitation and hygiene policies
  • Food security : reducing vulnerability for people suffering from malnutrition.
  • Protection from HIV/Aids : strengthening local support, improving access to healthcare and treatment centres.