Members of the Royal Family are joining together to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the British Red Cross on Tuesday.
The Queen, Prince Charles, The Duchess of Cambridge and Princess Alexandra have all paid tribute to British Red Cross staff and volunteers as the charity marks its milestone.
Her Majesty The Queen, the charity’s Patron for over six decades, sent a heartfelt message of congratulations, writing: “As Patron of the British Red Cross I send my warmest congratulations to the staff and volunteers of the Society on the occasion of its one hundred and fiftieth anniversary.
“Whether those involved in the Society are assisting people to return home from hospital safely, offering care and support in the aftermath of a disaster, volunteering in a shop, administering first aid or some of the many other activities the British Red Cross encompasses, their contribution is recognized, valued and greatly appreciated. I send my heartfelt thanks and warmest good wishes to you all.”
The Duchess of Cambridge penned a letter thanking 150 outstanding Red Cross staff and volunteers, nominated by the charity for their contributions.
Kate paid tribute to her own family ties to the Red Cross in the letter, with both her grandmother Valerie Middleton and great-grandmother Olive Middleton having served as Red Cross nurses.
Each letter has been sent with a commemorative coin created specially by the Royal Mint for the anniversary.
Tomorrow is a special day for us!
— British Red Cross (@BritishRedCross) August 3, 2020
Kate wrote, “On this anniversary, I would like to thank and remember the many thousands of staff and volunteers who over the years have contributed tirelessly to the organization’s work, including my great-grandmother, Olive and my grandmother, Valerie who both served as a Voluntary Aid Detachment with the British Red Cross. Olive during the First World War and Valerie during the Second World War.”
“Like you and many others, they are both part of the rich history of the British Red Cross, which is helping to ensure many people get the support they need during a crisis. In recent months, I have been deeply moved by the work you and your colleagues have continued to do throughout the coronavirus pandemic. You have all been doing an inspiring job supporting vulnerable people.”
Since 1870, the British Red Cross has been helping people in crisis, responding to conflicts, natural disasters and individual emergencies. From the First World War to today’s coronavirus effort, the charity’s huge network of volunteers continues to make a difference to the lives of vulnerable people in the U.K. and elsewhere in the world.
The Prince of Wales, President of the British Red Cross since 2003, also recorded an introduction to the charity’s new online exhibition celebrating the 150 year milestone. The exhibition showcases 150 objects from the charity’s museum and archives collection to celebrate those who have played an important part in its history, and includes a Red Cross food parcel delivered during the Syria crisis and a handwritten letter from Florence Nightingale.