Friends’ Ambulance Unit
The Friends’ Ambulance Unit was a volunteer ambulance service set up by the Society of Friends in 1914 to help provide opportunities for service for young male Friends during the First World War. In line with the Quaker Peace Testimony, it was mainly staffed by registered conscientious objectors.
First World War
Overall it sent more than one thousand men over to France and Belgium, after training at Jordans, Buckinghamshire, a centre for Quakerism. It was disbanded in 1919.
Second World War
It was refounded in 1939 by former members and a total of around 1,300 were trained and sent as far and wide as the Middle East and China.
Post Second World War
In 1946 the Friends’ Ambulance Unit was replaced and rebranded as the Friends Ambulance Unit Post-War Service. It continued in this capacity until 1959.
The work of the Friends’ Ambulance unit was referred to in the 1947 Nobel Peace Prize awarded to the Friends Service Council and the American Friends Service Council in recognition of their efforts during the War.