With Members in all five Continents
The movement currently consists of 189 national
Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
The founders of the Red Cross first of all set the goal, preferably to create aid societies in many different countries. Thanks to their drive their desire was quickly made a reality with no fewer than 22 national societies being established in the first 10 years. First in Belgium, Denmark, Russia, and Turkey. Then shortly after, the Red Cross ventured into Japan, America, and Africa with the concept.
Today, there are National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in 178 countries, therefore, in almost every country on earth. The movement thus holds members in all five continents, joined through the same ideals and methods.
When a nation seeks to form its own branch of the Red Cross, there is obviously concern that the principles should not be diluted or strayed from in any way. To this effect, the ICRC set out ten fundamental principles which all members must adhere to. Safeguarding these principles is the first duty of the independent, neutral entity, which is the ICRC.
Once the criteria have been fulfilled, then the new society is certified, and after that they become a member of the international Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent societies.
Originally founded as a military medical service to care for wounded and sick soldiers, today’s National societies of the Red Cross and Red Crescent are deployed in peacetime as well as wartime, in a variety of roles