World Red Cross Day


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World Red Cross Day

Every year May 8 is celebrated as World Red Cross Day to honor the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement founder Henry Dunant, who was born on this day in 1828. The day aims to broaden the public’s understanding of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.

The International Committee of the Red Cross was founded in the year 1863 in Geneva, Switzerland as a private organization to provide swift and efficient humanitarian response to people in war and disaster-affected areas. The Red Cross committee consists of 17 and 25 members who are empowered to direct lifesaving events and safeguard victim’s dignity on a national and international level under the human rights legislation.

Red Crescent Societies are affiliated and work in cooperation with the World Red Cross to assist in the activities of the movement. National Red Crescent societies and Red Cross Societies are found in almost every nation worldwide.

The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is an international humanitarian movement with approximately 17-million volunteers, members, and staff worldwide which was founded to protect human life and health, to ensure respect for all human beings, and to prevent and alleviate human suffering.

The First Geneva Convention recognized the red cross on a white background as the single, distinctive emblem. Since the symbol was to reflect the neutrality of the armed forces medical services and the protection conferred on them, the emblem adopted was formed by reversing the colors of the Swiss flag.


The first Red Cross Day was celebrated on May 8, 1948. The official title of the day has changed over time, and it became “World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day” in 1984.

This date is the anniversary of the birth of Henry Dunant, who was born on 8 May 1828. He was the founder of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the recipient of the first Nobel Peace Prize.

World Red Cross Day

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