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World Red Cross Day

World Red Cross Day is also known as Red Crescent Day is celebrated on May 8 every year. The World Red Cross Day is celebrated to commemorate the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement principles. This date marks the birth anniversary of Henry Dunant, who is the founder of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). He is also a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. He was born on May 8, 1828. On World Red Cross Day, people pay tribute to the humanitarian agency for their great contribution to helping people in need. The first Red Cross Day was celebrated on May 8, 1948. The official title of the day changed over time and became World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day in 1984. Here are ten key points to know about World Red Cross Day.


History & Significance:

  • Red Cross Day is the birth anniversary of Henry Dunant, the founder of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). Henry Dunant was also the recipient of the first Nobel Peace Prize.

  • The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) was founded in 1919 in Paris in the aftermath of World War I

  • There were five founding members - Britain, France, Italy, Japan, and the United States. Over the years, the number grew and now there are 190 recognized National Societies, which means one in almost every country.

  • World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day celebrate the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement principles.

  • The initiative, to celebrate the annual day, was introduced just after World War I. It was known as the Red Cross Truce.

  • This was done as part of an international commission of the 14th International Conference of the Red Cross. Red Cross

  • The Truce principles were approved at the 15th International Conference in Tokyo in 1934.

  • The worldwide structure of the Red Cross and Red Crescent now consists of the International Committee of the Red Cross, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and the national Red Cross and Red Crescent societies.

  • The first Red Cross Day was celebrated on May 8, 1948.

  • In 1946 in World War II, the Tokyo proposal was put into effect.

  • The possibility of an annual celebration was asked by the Board of Governors of the 'League of the Red Cross Societies (LORCS)', later called the General Assembly of the International Federation of Red Cross Societies.

  • Two years later the proposal of celebrating annually World Red Cross Day was adopted on 8 May 1948, the birth anniversary of Henry Dunant, the founder of the Red Cross.

  • In 1984 officially it was named “World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day”. The official title of the day changed over time and became World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day in 1984.

Principles of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement:

  • Humanity: To prevent and eradicate miseries for every human wherever it exists. To protect life, ensure every human being’s health and respect for them. It promotes mutual understanding, friendship, and cooperation among people.

  • Impartiality: It does no discrimination on the basis of nationality, race, religious beliefs, class, or political opinions. Therefore, helps the people on the basis of their needs.

  • Neutrality: Its aim is to keep everyone neutral in providing help and does not discriminate on the basis of any political, racial, religious, ideological alterations.

  • Independence: The National Societies, while auxiliaries in the humanitarian services of their governments and subject to the laws of their respective countries, must always maintain their autonomy so that they may be able at all times to act in accordance with the principles of the movement. The movement is independent.

  • Voluntary Service: It is a voluntary movement started for providing relief. It is not engendered for gain.

  • Unity: There will exist only one Red Cross and Red Crescent in one country. The organization is open to all. It must carry on its humanitarian work throughout its territory.

  • Universality: The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement shares equal status, equal liabilities, and duties in helping each other worldwide.

World Red Cross Day 2021:

The theme of World Red Cross Day 2021 is 'Together we are unstoppable"

On this World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day, we celebrate our long journey and reaffirm our commitment to our humanitarian mission.

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