With Humanity, Towards Peace – Red Cross

When I was a little kid, I had this whole different idea about Red Cross. We have a Red Cross organization back home in Nepal too and all I heard was how you could donate blood to Red Cross or how infinite numbers of lives had been saved from the blood received from the Red Cross society. So I as a little kid thought to myself, that may be like money banks this was the bank of Blood. As time went by, a lot of our course books explained the works done by Red Cross in depth. From that day I have always looked up to this organization.
I always found the whole idea of how red cross came to existence be very interesting and motivating one. Henry Dunant would be the person that the whole credit would go to. He was a young Swiss man, who witnessed the bloody battle in Solferine, Italy.  At that very instance without any fear of the whole battle going on Dunant organized the local people to take care, feed and comfort the wounded soldiers. For this very reason, I feel Dunant was a brave young man who had huge potential of reacting so fast and efficiently even in such terrorizing times. Usually most of the organizations are formed after witnessing, evaluating and then coming with solid solutions. But with Dunant it was different. His reaction and services were so prompt to help the wounded ones, and for me that defines the real humanity.
The Red Cross was born in 1863, established by five Geneva men including Dunant. In order to help the wounded they set up the International Committee for Relief which later came to be the International Committee for Red Cross (ICRC). It is a private humanitarian institution whose head office is based in Geneva, Switzerland.

As many years have gone by the ICRC has stood by its rules and have kept helping every needy ones all around the world as they had aimed to. Today ICRC is functioning everywhere from America, Asia, Central Asia, Europe, Africa to Middle East. They carry out relief operations to give aid to the victims of disasters which they combine it with the development in order to make the capacities of its member National Societies even stronger.  They also give protection and assistance to the victims of armed conflict and strife. Not only have they focused on wounded soldiers and victims of disaster by providing them with medical help but they have been there to support them emotionally too. In such cases the ICRC helps in reuniting families, helping the lost individual by searching and finding where about their family members. They not only cure the hurt ones but also protect the other civilians who are in the war or disaster pro zones. And the main help they provide is when they response to the needs of the victims of armed conflict or even any internal violence. And I think this is outstanding because instead of an organization planning and thinking hard for what to provide would be quite a difficult thing to do as the needs of people differ country to country wise. This way responding to the needs gets them in direct touch with the victims, which is helpful for both the sides.

During war and disaster time I think water and habitat becomes the major source of stress for the victims. Hence the ICRC has well coved that area too. They bring in access to water in such zones and create a sustainable living environment. By doing so I feel half of the burden is already taken off the victims head. Last but not the least thing that I felt really good about the work ICRC does is that, they visit the detainees. They do this visit to ensure that the detainees for no matter for what reason they were arrested, are being treated with dignity and humanity in accordance with international norms and standards. This was very significant matter to me, because in a lot of countries they do not allow the prisoners to have their basic right to humanity, which then to leads to bad consequences, uncountable number of deaths and traumatic mental illness. There are many more things that ICRC does for the welfare of people but it’s broad for each and everything to be discussed in detail. This shows how well and effectively ICRC has spread around the globe.

They have done a lot since the time they have been established, yet in future they still want to provide assistance without any discrimination based on race, nationality, religion, class or political opinions. They also hope to inspire, encourage, facilitate and promote all times and all forms of humanitarian activities all around the world to every one possible. ICRC hopes to prevent and mollify human suffering. And in future they hope to contribute much more in maintaining and promoting of human dignity and peace in the world.

As I learn more and more about RCIC, I realize that how important and unique work they are doing everyday changing everyone’s life in some way or the other. Their development works are the ones that I find really impressive because they are not only improving and taking care of the current matters but at the same time they are also working on better future. The main reason I really look up to RCIC is because, it’s a unique organization who is not only active during the times of conflicts/wars and disaster, but are also equally active during the time of peace. Sudden major incidents do not need to happen in order for ICRC to react. Hence we as individuals or groups can learn from their activities and be a part of what they are trying to achieve, by leading ourselves to more of humanity and peace for a better world.

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– Pragita Thapa

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