World Red Cross Day 2023: Theme, Significance, History

World Red Cross Day is a day that celebrates the fundamental principles of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. Observed every year on May 8, the day also honors the efforts of volunteers at the Red Cross all over the world and aims at encouraging everyone to engage themselves in humanitarian activities. May 8 also marks the birth anniversary of the founder of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) Jean-Henry Dunant, who also was the recipient of the first Nobel Peace Prize. This article presents important details related to World Red Cross Day 2023 such as its history, celebration, theme, etc.

World Red Cross Day 2023 Date

World Red Cross Day 2023May 8, 2023Monday
World Red Cross Day 2024May 8, 2024Wednesday
World Red Cross Day 2025May 8, 2025Thursday
World Red Cross Day 2026May 8, 2026Friday
World Red Cross Day 2027May 8, 2027Saturday

World Red Cross Day 2023 Overview

EventWorld Red Cross Day 2023
DateMay 8, 2023
Declared byInternational Committee of the Red Cross
Observed byWorldwide
Purpose of celebrationTo celebrate the principles of the International Red Cross and encourage humanitarian activities among individuals.


The Red Cross volunteers dedicate their lives to providing relief to the people affected by natural calamities and other disaster activities in any country. The idea behind observing World Red Cross Day is to celebrate and honor these people who work selflessly for the betterment of those who are suffering. The day also provides a platform to inspire, encourage and initiate all forms of humanitarian activities in order to generate a peaceful environment.


Just after World War I, a need was felt for an “annual action that could take hold in the whole world and that would be a major contribution to peace”. The initiative was called the “Red Cross Truce” and was the brainchild of the International Commission. The commission submitted its report on the initiative at the 15th International Conference of the Red Cross in Tokyo in 1934 where it got approved. However, it was only after World War II that the proposal was studied by the League of Red Cross Societies (LRCS) and Red Cross Society came into existence in 1946. In 1991, it was renamed the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

Two years later, a proposal of an annual International Red Cross Day was adopted and the first Red Cross Day. Thus, the world’s first Red Cross Day was observed on May 8, 1948. The official title of the day changed and in 1984 it became “World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day”.

Check Important Days in May


Many local, national and international events are organized by the Red Cross Society in celebrations of World Red Cross Day. People involved in volunteer work at different levels are presented with honors and awards and people pay their huge respects to them. To celebrate this day, you can try learning about the Red cross society, its principles and movements and familiarize yourself Jean-Henri Dunant who initiated the establishment of the Red Cross after a meeting with Napoleon III. You can also join the social media celebration of the day by following the #RedCrossDay.

World Red Cross Day Theme 2023

Every year a theme is decided and the celebrations of World Red Cross Day are carried out in accordance with the theme. The theme for the year 2023 is ‘Everything we do comes from the heart’. You can also check themes of World Red Cross Day for the last 5 years.

2018Memorable smiles from around the world
2023To highlight the universal, human, and diverse aspects of the Red Cross Movement

Fundamental Principles of the Red Cross Movement

Check out the seven Fundamental Principles of the Red Cross Movement that provide an ethical, operational and institutional framework for the work of the Red Cross around the world.

  1. Humanity- Driven by a desire to bring help without discrimination to the wounded. Its purpose is to protect life and health and ensure respect for human being.
  2. Impartiality- It makes no discrimination based on nationality, religious beliefs, race, class or political opinions.
  3. Neutrality- The movement should not take sides in hostilities or engage in any kind of controversies, political, racial, religious or ideological.
  4. Independence- The movement is and should remain independent.
  5. Voluntary service- It is a voluntary relief movement that should never be prompted by a desire for gain.
  6. Unity- There can be only one Red Cross or one Red Crescent Society in any country and it must be open to all.
  7. Universality- The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement share equal responsibilities and duties in helping each other.

Frequently Asked Questions

When do we celebrate World Red Cross Day?

May 8 every year

What does the Red Cross symbolize?

The Red Cross is a symbol of protection and is also a sign of hope.

Where was the Red Cross founded?

Washington DC, United States

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