National Geographic : 1917 May
Photograph from Harriet Chalmers Adams PUPILS AT A FRENCH SCHOOL FOR WAR ORPHANS In the midst of her battle for national existence, France is doing her utmost to provide an education for the children of her dead patriots. It is a difficult task, however, to feed and clothe as well as give instruction to the fatherless thousands. These men must have our best. To prepare against their needs in advance will be a stupendous task which the Red Cross must undertake. Doctors, nurses, ambulances, must be made ready. Vast quantities of hospital stores-linen, bandages, and supplies of every kind-must be prepared and at once. If we wait, it may be too late. OUR DUTY TO OUR FLAG'S DEFENDERS When we ask our own sons and broth ers to fight for our liberty 3,000 miles from home, in a country already sore and afflicted, surely we cannot do less than prepare to take care of them in their day of suffering. Gallant Canada from 8,ooo,ooo popu lation raised an army of 450,000 men. Eighty thousand are dead or injured, and Canada has raised in value $16,ooo,ooo for the Red Cross to relieve her sick and wounded. Her Red Cross, thus vitalized by the sacrifice of those at home, has been able to save thousands from death and misery. Immediately our soldiers go into camp their dependent families will become a problem. Obviously, in a country the size of our own, the proper and practical way to distribute both the burdens and the benefits fairly and uniformly will be through the government itself. This is especially fitting when voluntary contri butions must meet such enormous re quirements in other fields. There will undoubtedly arise a large number of special cases requiring addi tional or unusual assistance. Such assist ance should be made systematic largely through local chapters of the Red Cross. When our men go to France we must not only prepare to take care of them when sick and wounded; another very serious problem will confront them and will confront us in our care and fore thought on their behalf. Englishmen and Frenchmen, when from time to time they are relieved from their grim duties in the trenches, go home. The soldiers from other coun tries on the firing line cannot go home; there is no home to go to! They go to Paris. Many of them do not return from Paris as efficient soldiers as they were when they went there.