Founder of Red Cross
Henry Dunant (born Jean-Henri Dunant; 8 May 1828 – 30 October 1910), also known as Henri Dunant, was a Swiss Christian, humanitarian, businessman and social activist. He was the visionary, promoter and co-founder and father of the Red Cross. In 1901, he received the first Nobel Peace Prize together with Frédéric Passy, making Dunant the first Swiss Nobel laureate.
Dunant was born in Geneva, Switzerland, in 1828 as the first son of businessman Jean-Jacques Dunant and Antoinette Dunant-Colladon. His family was devoutly Calvinist and had significant influence in Geneva society. His parents stressed the value of social work, and his father was active helping orphans and parolees, while his mother worked with the sick and poor.
Dunant grew up during the period of religious awakening known as the Réveil, and at age 18 he joined the Geneva Society for Alms giving. In the following year, together with friends, he founded the so-called Thursday Association, a loose band of young men that met to study the Bible and help the poor, and he spent much of his free time engaged in prison visits and social work. On 30 November 1852, he founded the Geneva chapter of the YMCA and three years later he took part in the Paris meeting devoted to the founding of its international organization.
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