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World Red Cross Day: 4 Important Things You Should Know

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Bajaj Finserv Health
May 6th, 2022
7 mins read

Key Takeaways

  • World Red Cross Day is celebrated on the birth anniversary of Henri Dunant
  • The theme for World Red Cross Day 2022 is #BeHumanKIND
  • You can contribute by raising health awareness on World Red Cross Day

World Red Cross Day, also known as World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day, is globally observed on May 8 every year. It marks the day when Henri Dunant, the founder of the Red Cross Movement was born. Henri Dunant started the movement after witnessing the tragedy during the Battle of Solferino in 1859, Italy. In 1863, The International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) was established in Geneva, Switzerland. ICRC aims to help people affected by armed violence and conflict. It also aims to promote laws that can help protect war victims.  

In 1919, American philanthropist Henry Davison established the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in Paris. It was founded during the aftermath of World War I and was originally known as the League of Red Cross Societies. It was established with the belief that the expertise and compassion of Red Cross volunteers during war could be showcased during peacetime too. The league had a simple objective to help improve the health of people in countries that have greatly suffered at the hands of wars.

As World Red Cross Day approaches, here are some facts about International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and how you can take part in observing World Red Cross Day.

Additional Read: World Immunization Week

World Red Cross Day

Important facts about International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement on World Red Cross Day 

  • It is one of the largest humanitarian networks in the world. 
  • It aims to alleviate and prevent human suffering, especially during wars and emergencies such as floods, epidemics, and earthquakes. 
  • The movement is not a single organization but comprised of various committees.  
  • The movement comprises ICRC, IFRC, and other 190 national societies across the globe. 
  • Each of these have their own roles and legal identity but are unified by seven fundamental principles. 
  • These fundamental principles are impartiality, independence, voluntary service, humanity, neutrality, unity and universality.  As the originator of this international movement, ICRC has an exclusive humanitarian mission to protect the dignity and lives of victims of conflict and armed violence. 
  • IFRC promotes, inspires, and facilitates the humanitarian activities carried out by the national societies.  

World Red Cross day theme

  • IFRC coordinates and directs the actions of the member societies in order to assist the victims of health emergencies, technological and natural disasters, and refugee issues.
  •  National societies of the Movement are auxiliaries to the national authorities in the humanitarian field. 
  • These national societies provide a number of services including social and health programs, and disaster relief. During war, these societies may also offer assistance to the civilians and support the armed forces’ medical services. 
  • The Movement also has developed a code of conduct in order to ensure high standards while providing assistance to the people who have suffered from disasters and wars. 
  • Although it is not an organization, the Movement has its own publication named Red Cross Red Crescent Magazine. The magazine is jointly edited by the International Federation in Geneva and ICRC [1]. 

World Red Cross Day theme  

Since 2009, there has been a theme every year to celebrate World Red Cross Day. The first theme focused on the grave effects of climate change. For World Red Cross Day 2022, the theme is #BeHumanKIND [2]. This Red Cross Day theme comes in lieu of multiple 21st century crises that spared no one and hit the most vulnerable people the hardest.

Additional Read: World Malaria DayRed Cross Day theme

How you can observe World Red Cross Day 

To celebrate this, you can do the following: 

  • Spread awareness about it and its theme 
  • Volunteer in your local community to help others around you 
  • Participate in the events organized by the local Red Cross authorities 

Another way you can contribute to by taking care of the health needs of communities and families around you. For instance, you can distribute multivitamins for women, men and children in your locality. When it comes to your family, make sure that you have health insurance for women, elders, and children to safeguard their health.

Check out the Aarogya Care health insurance plans offered on Bajaj Finserv Health. With the Complete Health Solution Plan, you get a one-stop solution for your and your family’s healthcare needs. This way, you can prioritize your and your loved ones’ health on World Red Cross Day.

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