After the establishment of the Red Lion and Sun Society in 1922, and given its notable response to a variety of incidents including the 1930 Salmas earthquake, in eastern Iran, the 1931 quake in the northeastern province of Khorasan, the 1960 Lar and 1962 Buin Zahra earthquakes by deploying relief teams to the affected zones to save the victims, the first 1968 Relief Services Bylaw was endorsed by the Central Board of the Society, which entrusted to the Red Crescent Society (formerly Lion and Sun) the responsibility of performing relief and treatment services to the victims of natural disasters during peacetime.
The first formal Relief Organization was carried out in 1971 with the recruitment of full-time forces under the name of "General Relief".
The society had a therapeutic approach until the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979 and introduction of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s establishment. After the revolution the society’s core responsibilities were focused on offering relief services in disasters, youths and logistics. In the year 1981, with the outbreak of the Iraq-imposed war on Iran and the stark need for offering relief services to the war’s wounded and injured victims, the body was renamed from the "General Administration of Relief" to the "Relief Directorate"; the services of this deputy were to train and provide human resources in the fields of treatment, logistics and assistance to the war victims. In 2000, the "Relief Department" was promoted to the "Relief and Rescue Organization", and with the addition of the word "relief" to the organization, the body’s services entered a new stage.
The statute of the Red Crescent Society Currently requires the body to offer the following services:
1) Provide relief services in the event of natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, etc. inside and outside of the country
2) Send aid workers to offer first aid in accidents
3) Plan and take action to prepare for the prevention of accidents and emergency training, rescue and training of the required relief and rescue personnel and human resources
4) Send aid and dispatch relief and treatment teams to other countries if case of emergency
5) Provide search and rescue services in incidents as much as possible.
The body's valuable response to national and foreign disasters is evident. To name a few examples the body has sent relief and rescue teams as well as support to Avaj earthquake, Bam earthquake, Haris and Varzaghan earthquake, Kermanshah earthquake, Gono flood, Afghan’s displaced people crisis, relief and rescue in road and mountain disasters, Somalia famine and drought and relief services to Myanmar displaced Moslems over the years.