World Humanitarian Day_19th August 2021

www.un.org 

World Humanitarian Day 
19 August

 human figures running while consumed by shades of red (global warming) and shades of blue (tsunami as a climate change phenomenon).  ©Sadek Ahmed
“The Human Race”, an illustration depicting human figures running while consumed by shades of red (global warming) and shades of blue (tsunami as a climate change phenomenon).
PHOTO:©Sadek Ahmed
“Around the world, conflict is forcing record numbers of people from their homes, with over 65 million people now displaced. Children are recruited by armed groups and used to fight. Women are abused and humiliated. As humanitarian workers deliver aid and medical workers provide for those in need, they are all too often targeted or treated as threats.” — UN Secretary-General, António Guterres

World Humanitarian Day (WHD) is held every year on 19 August to pay tribute to aid workers who risk their lives in humanitarian service, and to rally support for people affected by crises around the world.


#TheHumanRace

A global challenge for climate action in solidarity with the people who need it most

The climate emergency is wreaking havoc across the world at a scale that people on the front lines and in the humanitarian community cannot manage. Time is already running out for the world’s most vulnerable people — those who have contributed least to the global climate emergency yet are hit the hardest — and millions of others that are already losing their homes, their livelihoods, and their lives.

With most climate campaigns focused on slowing climate change and securing the planet’s future, World Humanitarian Day 2021, will highlight the immediate consequences of the climate emergency for the world’s most vulnerable people and ensure that their voices are heard, and their needs top the agenda at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November.

Therefore, everyone is invited to join #TheHumanRace, which is the global challenge for climate action in solidarity with people who need it the most; and to put the needs of climate-vulnerable people front and centre at the UN climate summit (COP26).

Stand in solidarity with the world’s most vulnerable people by using these hashtags in your social media activities #TheHumanRace #WorldHumanitarianDay

WHD 2021 logo

Join #theHumanRace

Run, ride, swim, walk or do any activity of your choice for a cumulative 100 minutes between August 16 and August 31 in solidarity with vulnerable people and to tell world leaders that they expect developed countries to deliver on their decade-old pledge of $100 billion annually for climate mitigation and adaptation in developing countries. If you don’t wish to take part physically you can ADD YOUR VOICE.

Background

This day was designated in memory of the 19 August 2003 bomb attack on the Canal Hotel in Baghdad, Iraq, killing 22 people, including the chief humanitarian in Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello. In 2009, the United Nations General Assembly formalized the day as World Humanitarian Day (WHD).

Each year, WHD focuses on a theme, bringing together partners from across the humanitarian system to advocate for the survival, well-being and dignity of people affected by crises, and for the safety and security of aid workers.

This year, we highlight the immediate human cost of the climate crisis by pressuring world leaders to take meaningful climate action for the world’s most vulnerable people.

Share the WHD film

to launch and promote the campaign

Help spread the word

across your social channels and challenge your followers to join

Get your influencers

to add their voices and to speak about the issue

Contribute campaign content

to highlight the human cost of the climate crisis for the microsite

Facts & Figures

  • In 2020, 475 aid workers were attacked: 108 killed, 242 wounded and 125 kidnapped.
  • Travel and movement restrictions for international staff (due to Covid-19) may partly explain why the proportion of national aid worker victims in 2020 was even higher than usual (95%).
  • Most of the violence took place in South Sudan, Syria, and DRC. Other high incident contexts included Central African Republic and Mali, where incidents more than doubled since 2018.
  • 2020 marked the first time in 20 years that Afghanistan was not one of the top five most violent contexts for aid workers.
  • Attacks against aid workers in Tigray of Ethiopia rose during 2020 and has been worsening further in 2021.
  •  Medical equipment is loaded into an aircraft in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, as part of a UN “Solidarity Flight” to deliver supplies to African countries fighting the coronavirus pandemic.

    One of the purposes of the United Nations, as stated in its Charter, is “to achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character.”  The UN first did this in the aftermath of the Second World War on the devastated continent of Europe, which it helped to rebuild.  The Organization is now relied upon by the international community to coordinate humanitarian relief operations due to natural and man-made disasters in areas beyond the relief capacity of national authorities alone.

    A woman sitting on the ground inside a tent.

    In 2021, 235 million people will need humanitarian assistance and protection. This number has risen to 1 in 33 people worldwide – a significant increase from 1 in 45 at the launch of the Global Humanitarian Overview 2020, which was already the highest figure in decades. The UN and partner organizations aim to assist 160 million people most in need across 56 countries and will require a total of $35 billion to do so.

    A crowd of women sitting and laughing

    International days and weeks are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity. The existence of international days predates the establishment of the United Nations, but the UN has embraced them as a powerful advocacy tool. We also mark other UN observances.

     


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