Promoting principles and values

In a world with increasing isolation, tension and recourse to violence, it is clear that the Red Cross Red Crescent must champion the individual and community values which encourage respect for other human beings and a willingness to work together to find solutions to community problems.

The IFRC has embarked on a consistent and inspirational approach to promoting humanitarian values and the seven Fundamental Principles of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.

The seven Fundamental Principles are: humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality.

The aim is to influence the behaviour of the people we work with, through a better understanding of the Fundamental Principles and humanitarian values. The three main target groups are those working within Red Cross Red Crescent National Societies, public and private authorities, and members of the communities where we work.

The main priorities for this area of work are:

  • Developing a better understanding internally.
    Initiatives have been developed to ensure that Red Cross Red Crescent volunteers and staff understand and act on the basis of the Fundamental Principles in their work with vulnerable people in times of peace, disaster or armed conflict. Training includes: the legal and ideological basis of the Red Cross Red Crescent, decision-making processes and mandates as well as communications and relations with others
  • Raising awareness of public and private authorities.
    Ensuring that partner authorities understand how Red Cross Red Crescent works will facilitate better cooperation. Informing these groups about operational procedures, National Societies' auxiliary status, and the need to respect the emblem, for example, are all important elements in building good working partnerships.

Influencing behaviour in the community

By applying these principles and values in our work with communities and vulnerable groups, we can show their importance. Based on experience and operational capacity, Red Cross Red Crescent can be a catalyst for change and make a difference in the way people behave towards each other. The following are values that the Movement has formally stated it believes to be of importance for external promotion:

  • the protection of life, health and human dignity
  • respect for the human being
  • non-discrimination on the basis of nationality, race, gender, religious beliefs, class or political opinions
  • mutual understanding, friendship, cooperation and lasting peace among people
  • service by volunteers 



Inclusion: disability
Disability Inclusion is consubstantial to protecting and promoting human dignity, which underpins the work of the RCRC and its Fundamental Principles. We are committed to work towards removing barriers to opportunity and access faced by disabled persons.
Protection, gender and inclusion
The basis for the IFRC’s gender and diversity work is its humanitarian mandate to prevent and alleviate human suffering without discrimination and to protect human dignity.
Lucha contra la violencia
La Federación Internacional de Sociedades de la Cruz Roja y de la Media Luna Roja (Federación Internacional) ha comprobado que la violencia y la falta de respeto por la diversidad son algunos de los "problemas esenciales a los que se enfrenta la comunidad mundial", y asume una función muy activa en las actividades destinadas a la prevención y mitigación de la violencia y en las intervenciones a...
Los jóvenes como agentes del cambio de comportamiento
El programa sobre los jóvenes como agentes del cambio de comportamiento es la principal iniciativa emprendida por la Federación Internacional de Sociedades de la Cruz Roja y de la Media Luna Roja (Federación Internacional) para la promoción de una cultura de no violencia y paz. Creado en 2008, este programa fomenta la autonomía de los jóvenes para que asuman una función directiva ética en el se...

Fundamental Principles

The seven Fundamental Principles guarantee the continuity of the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement and its humanitarian work.
Los siete Principios Fundamentales
Proclamados en Viena en 1965, los siete Principios Fundamentales crean un vínculo de unión entre las Sociedades Nacionales de la Cruz Roja y de la Media Luna Roja, el Comité Internacional de la Cruz Roja y la Federación Internacional de Sociedades de la Cruz Roja y de la Media Luna Roja. Los Principios Fundamentales garantizan la continuidad del Movimiento de la Cruz Roja y de la Media Luna Roj...