Deployment of the "Family Links Answers" tool for use by the Panamanian Red Cross and the Dominican Red Cross
Panama City, Panama. In a framework of exchange, the ICRC, the Panamanian Red Cross (PRC) and the Dominican Red Cross (DRC) are jointly deploying the Family Links Answers (FLA) tool, used by Red Cross National Societies for the secure management of cases of restoring family links.
The deployment aims to strengthen the effectiveness, reliability, and efficiency of family links network services for beneficiaries in both contexts. During the first two weeks of May, the protection teams of the concerned National Societies and the ICRC team will meet daily to ensure that the former are properly trained on the use of the tool, adapt their respective guidelines and workflows, and implement it correctly.
The deployment of the Family Links Answers (FLA) tool is the result of two years of efforts by the Protection teams of the ICRC Regional Delegation for Panama and the Caribbean and both the PRC and the DRC over the past year. These efforts have included a capacity assessment, the establishment of national strategies for restoring family links and the development of guidelines for Restoring Family Links (RFL), as well as close technical support from the ICRC with regard to responding to individual cases of missing persons and the needs of families of the missing.
Both National Societies are committed to implementing best practices in RFL and data protection. Post-deployment accompaniment is planned, with the ICRC continuing to provide technical support and recommendations to ensure the successful deployment of the tool.
"This tool is part of our commitment to affected people with missing family members and to continue the search for each missing person until we can provide answers as to their whereabouts," Oscar Chavez, ICRC Head of Operations for Panama and the Caribbean.
The Restoring Family Links (RFL) service is part of a response by the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, notably through an operational partnership between the ICRC and National Societies in countries impacted by migratory routes. The aim is to help migrants by providing them with the means of communication to inform their families of their whereabouts and maintain contact with their loved ones.
Through the RFL program, the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement helps thousands of people to maintain or re-establish contact with their loved ones, thus preventing disappearances.
The ICRC, through its Regional Delegation for Panama and the Caribbean, supports RFL services, in conjunction with National Societies in the region.
If you lose contact with a loved one, you can access: https://familylinks.icrc.org or visit the nearest Red Cross office.