Red Cross as an International Organization

Table of Contents


The following document will look at Red Cross as an international body, its date of formation as well as the requirements that one has to have before joining. The purpose and the organization will also be discussed in this document. Structure and achievements will also be looked at in this document. The contacts that the organization has with other international organizations will also be looked at.

Establishment of the Body

Red Cross is an organization that was formed internationally in 1863 in Geneva, Switzerland. It was founded by Henry Dunant. There is another body that was formed in 1919 called the International Federation of Red Cross, and it functions to coordinate the activities that are carried out by Red Cross.

Today there are over 97 million volunteers who work with Red Cross, and they serve to protect human life. It was established during that time because the founder saw that so many people were suffering during the war. People were wounded, and there was no place they could receive treatment (Moorehead 1998:12).

Standards of the Body

The Red Cross society has standards that are to be followed. One is that the society has to provide humanitarian activities like distribution of food, treating the wounded, and saving lives in times of calamities like floods and famine.

They are also required to be neutral in all situations and not just treat people because they belong to a certain ethnic group. Another standard is to provide voluntary services to the countries the members are in. This could be the execution of projects that they are required to come up with. Unity is another standard that is required. There is no age that one is limited to join as it is volunteer work (Moorehead 1998:14).

List of Members

There is no particular list of members in the society, but there are over 97 million volunteers who work with the organization. It is established in 80 countries, and the number of staff is about 12,000 worldwide, who are professionals like doctors and engineers. (Georges, 1984:56)

Purpose of the Body

The main purpose of the body is to protect the life of human beings, those who suffer because of war or natural calamities like floods and famine, as well as a disease outbreak. (David P, 2003:65)

Functions of the Organization

The functions of the organization include: promoting values and principles of humanitarian; provide assistance in cases of emergency like the outbreak of wars or threatening diseases; provide education on volunteering and prepare other bodies for disasters; provide support for health care projects in the regions they are established and finally provide activities that are related to the youth.

Achievements of the Organization

The organization has achievements to save many lives in the world. They do this with the help of the natives in the countries they are established in. They have also been able to raise funds for the organization so that it can be able to carry out its operations.

Another major achievement is bringing peace to the countries that were fighting. They have also worked with the organizations that help them in the implementation of their projects like the UN. The UN has helped them with relief supplies and offered them protection when they go out to offer help to war victims (Neville, 2002:189)

List of References

Caroline Moorehead 1998, Dunant’s dream: War, Switzerland and the history of the Red Cross. HarperCollins, London. 12-19

David P. Forsythe 2003, “The International Committee of the Red Cross and International Humanitarian Law.” In: Humanitäres Völkerrecht – Informationsschriften. The Journal of International Law of Peace and Armed Conflict. 2, German Red Cross and Institute for International Law of Peace and Armed Conflict, p. 64–77.

Georges Willemin, Roger Heacock 1984, International Organization and the Evolution ofWorld Society. Volume 2: The International Committee of the Red Cross. MartinusNijhoff Publishers, Boston.p 56-58

Jean-Philippe Lavoyer, Louis Maresca, 1999, The Role of the ICRC in the Development of International Humanitarian Law. In: International Negotiation. p. 503–527.

Neville Wylie: The Sound of Silence 2002, The History of the International Committee of the Red Cross as Past and Present. In: Diplomacy and Statecraft. p. 186–204.

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