Friday, August 19, 2016

World Humanitarian Day

Copyright © Françoise Herrmann 

This year, the theme for World Humanitarian Day is set to One Humanity, and in particular the estimated 130 million people worldwide, thrown into impossible situations of conflict and disaster, who depend on humanitarian aid to survive. 

World Humanitarian Day was founded seven years ago, with an August. 19 celebration date selected to commemorate the bombing of UN Headquarters in Baghdad, Irak, in 2003.

This year’s celebration punctuates a landmark year of action because of the first World Humanitarian Summit that was held in Istanbul, Turkey, on May 23-24.  Indeed the selected theme, One Humanity, echoes the Secretary General's report One Humanity: Shared responsibility, (Feb. 2009), calling for the world to come together at the Summit to take action that bridges all the divides.

Today also, the UN-WHO has launched the Humanitarian Impossible Choices social media campaign to raise consciousness in regards the sorts of crises situations that exist.

Here are a few humanitarian facts and figures used to inform the Impossible Choices humanitarian campaign :
  •        In 2014, 80% of landmine casualties were civilian
  •        92% of people killed or injured by explosive weapons in populated areas are civilians.
  •        El Nino has affected more than 62 m people, including about 32 million is Southern African.
  •        The average length of displacement due to civil strife is 17 years
  •       More than 26 million people have been displaced due to disasters arising from natural causes since 2009.
  •        In Yemen, 14 million people do not have access to clean water.
  •        60% of maternal deaths take place in humanitarian crises areas.
  •        75 million women and children are caught in the crises.
Agenda for Humanity -  One Humanity: Shared responsibility – Report of the UN Secretary General for the World Humanitarian Summit (Feb. 2016)
UN – World Humanitarian Day
UN – OCCHA – Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Aid
UN - WHO Impossible choices humanitarian campaign

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