This blog is a companion to the Database of Volunteers of Essendon and Flemington

Saturday, April 30, 2016

British Red Cross Volunteers

Over 90,000 people volunteered for the British Red Cross in Britain and overseas during the war.   Search for your family’s personnel records, and discover what Red Cross volunteers were doing in your local area 100 years ago.

Red Cross volunteers did a wide range of jobs, from the Voluntary Aid Detachments, pictured above, to nursing,  cooking, cleaning, searchers trying to discover the fate of missing men and so on, so the database includes men as well as women.

I find that if you pop 'Australia' into the location search box, it will bring up volunteers who gave an Australian bank as their address, or sometimes Australia in their address.  You can try other local names.  For instance, I found the following British Red Cross volunteer by putting 'Moonee Ponds' in the location:

Mrs Ivy Wilson Jenkins, nee Graham, is in the database, giving 2 Normanby St, Moonee Ponds, Australia as her address.  Ivy served from 01/09/1916  to  01/06/1918 as a VAD, engaged in Ward work, medical Surgical work, for twenty pounds per annum. She served at the following locations: Exeter War Hospitals Sept 1- 1916 - Aug 30; 1917 1st Southern General Hs Nov.5.1917 - June 7. 1918 Birmingham.

There are no Jenkins' at the Normanby St address in the Empire Called database, but further research may reveal more about Ivy Jenkins at a later date.


  1. Thanks Lenore, especially for the advice to include "australia" in the location field. I found Stanley S. Addison who returned to Australia and among other things became a President of the Shire of Eltham and brought electricity to Kangaroo Ground.

  2. There seem to have been a lot of Australians in the UK during the war for one reason or another. I kept a note of women from Essendon whom I knew had travelled to the UK during the war, but none of them turned up working for the British Red Cross, though of course there were other organisations, including the Australian Red Cross who were working on the Missing and Wounded correspondence. How good would it be if the Australian Red Cross turned up a list of workers?