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Our Principles in action on World Red Cross Day

We celebrate our Fundamental Principles on World Red Cross Day, and see them in action in Nepal

Friday May 8, 2015

Red Cross volunteer Manisha Bashyal distributes water purification tablets to villagers in Nepal

As Red Cross and Red Crescent societies from around the world contribute to the ongoing relief efforts in Nepal, this year's World Red Cross Day celebrations focus on our fundamental principles in action.  

World Red Cross Day is held annually on 8 May, the birthday of Red Cross Red Crescent founder Henry Dunant, and celebrates the vital humanitarian work of millions of volunteers in 189 countries.  

In 2015 we honour the day by celebrating 50 years of the Fundamental Principles - the humanitarian values that guide our work as an international movement.  

Australian Red Cross CEO Robert Tickner says Red Cross' response to the earthquake that devastated Nepal exemplifies our principles in action.  

"As with everything Red Cross does, our relief effort in Nepal is helping those people most in need, irrespective of race, religion or class.  

"Red Cross societies from around the world are united in the humanitarian effort and volunteers are playing a vital role. These are our principles in action.  

"As the world faces ongoing conflict, our Fundamental Principles remain a powerful source of inspiration. They encourage respect for all people regardless of their nationality, race or religion, and remind us that our shared humanity is what counts.  

"Thanks to the commitment of Red Cross people to uphold the ideals expressed in the Fundamental Principles, we are able to deliver humanitarian services at home and around the world," said Robert Tickner.     

Red Cross' Fundamental Principles were formally and unanimously adopted at the 1965 International Conference of the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement. Yet they have been in action since the beginning in 1859 when Henry Dunant helped sick and wounded soldiers on the battlefield of Solferino, Italy.  

On World Red Cross Day, people are invited to learn more about our Fundamental Principles.  

You can find us on social media - #WorldRedCrossDay and #ourprinciplesinaction