March has been designated American Red Cross Month by every president since Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1943. The American Red Cross is a humanitarian organization providing domestic & international disaster relief, communnications between military and family members, blood donation services, education on preparedness, health, and safety.
The American Red Cross was started by Clara Barton in 1881 after working with the International Red Cross in Switzerland during the Franco-Prussian War. Contrary to the belief of many, the American Red Cross is not a government agency, but is an independent nonprofit, tax-exempt organziation chartered by the US Congress, initially in 1900, with a unique legal status requiring the organization to support domestic/international disaster relief, maintain communication between US military and family members, as well as to fulfill the Geneva Convention, as delegated by the federal government.
The American Red Cross has been a leader in firsts, including:
Domestic disaster relief during the 1881 Michigan forest fires
US Military assistance in 1898 during the Spanish-American War
First Aid Instruction begins in 1910 with the donation of rail car as a classroom
Water Safety Instruction begins in 1914 thanks to Commodore Wilbert E Longfellow
War effort fundraising and services to the military begin in 1917
National Blood Donor Services begin in 1941 thanks to Dr. Charles Drew
The American Red Cross relies on donations to continue its mission and services to those in need. Consider donating to further their mission.