As part of the world’s largest humanitarian movement, Red Cross has been embedded in Australian life for a century. It all began nine days after the outbreak of World War I at Government House, Melbourne, where Red Cross Australia was born. Thousands of volunteers signed up during this period and by the time WWII came around, the charitable organisation had nearly half a million members. Today almost 1 million Red Cross affiliates continue to make a positive difference to the lives of people in need every day. This year, to mark 100 years of the Red Cross, an exhibition was opened on Wednesday 13th August by the Major of Albury, Kevin Mack, at Albury Library Museum. “Red Cross: 100 Years” is one of a series of local exhibitions and events to mark the centenary of WWI and the role of the Red Cross during the war years of 1914 to 1918.The exhibition will be displayed for eight months and contains a mix of objects reflecting the work of the organisation which will be accompanied by a short film. The Museum hopes the poignant exhibition will also remember the mothers, grandmothers, sisters and broken hearted wives of the hundreds of local men who marched off to war all those years ago.
The Red Cross is there for people in need regardless of nationality, race or beliefs. They train people in first aid, motivate the next generation to improve their community and ultimately, save lives. This idea took root a century ago and is still going strong today.
By Rhi Quinn