World Red Cross Day is celebrated every year on 08 May. This day is celebrated to commemorate the birthday of Jean-Henri Dunant, the founder of the Red Cross and the first Nobel Laureate for Peace.
What is Red Cross
Red Cross is an international organization whose purpose is to save human life. This organization was established in 1863 by Henry Dunant in Geneva. Its headquarter is located in Geneva, Switzerland. The Red Cross organization has received the Nobel Peace Prize three times in 1917, 1944 and 1963 for world peace.
Purpose of the Red Cross Organization
The main objective of the Red Cross organization is human service and to help and heal the soldiers injured during the war. This organization works for coordination between the governments of different countries around the world in times of peace and war. Along with this, it helps the victims in natural calamity like epidemic disease, floods, earthquake, cyclones etc.
Why Red Cross Day is celebrated on 08 May
Henry Dunant is credited with founding the International Red Cross Movement and starting the Geneva Convention. For this important role, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and he was the first Nobel Laureate for Peace. Red Cross Day is celebrated every year on 08 May, his birthday. The first Red Cross Day was celebrated on 08 May 1948. Since then this day is celebrated in memory of the principles of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.
The official title of Red Cross Day has changed over time and since 1984 this day is celebrated as World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day.
Who was Henry Dunant
Henri Dunant was a Swiss businessman and social worker. He was awarded the first Nobel Prize for Peace in 1901. During a business trip in 1859, Dunant witnessed the aftermath of the Battle of Solferino in Italy. He introduced his memories and experiences through the book “A Memory of Solferino”, which later became the inspiration for the formation of the “International Committee of the Red Cross” (ICRC) in 1863. A year after this, the Geneva Convention held in 1864 was based on the idea of Dunant, an independent organization to be created for the care of wounded soldiers.
After the end of the First World War, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies was established in Paris in 1919. At that time only 5 countries – Britain, France, Italy, Japan and the United States were its founding members. But over time the number of its members kept increasing and today almost every country is its member.