humanitarian day 2022

World Humanitarian Day 2022

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There have always been people who have provided aid to those in need whenever and wherever they have encountered a crisis. Every year on 19th August, World Humanitarian Day is commemorated to honour the humanitarian endeavours around the world and to promote human welfare.

Facts & Figures

  • 460 assistance workers were attacked in 2021, leading to 140 fatalities, 203 injuries, and 117 abductions.
  • 98% of the dead aid workers were national employees and 2% were expatriate employees; more than half (53%) worked for national NGOs.
  • The majority of the violence occurred in South Sudan, Afghanistan, and Syria.
  • The war in Ukraine, where rocket assaults and shelling risk both civilians and relief workers equally, is projected to cause a considerable increase in casualties in 2022.
  • Yemen is the biggest humanitarian catastrophe in the world, with an estimated 20.7 million (67% of the population) in need of aid, 12.1 million of whom are assessed to be in urgent need, according to the 2021 Humanitarian Needs Overview.

What is World Humanitarian Day?

WHD is a campaign established by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

On 19th August 2003, 22 humanitarian relief workers, including Sergio Vieira de Mello, the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Iraq, died in a bombing at the Canal Hotel in Baghdad, Iraq. The United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution recognizing August 19 as World Humanitarian Day (WHD) five years later. Every year, World Humanitarian Day (WHD) focuses on a particular subject and brings together partners from many sectors of the humanitarian system to promote the survival, wellbeing, and dignity of those affected by disasters as well as the security and safety of aid workers.

The 2022 Theme: It takes a village

Every year, WHD is observed under a specific theme. According to the United Nations, through this year’s theme, we demonstrate the value, efficacy, and positive effects of humanitarian work. It is said that a child needs a village to raise them. The same is true for helping someone in a humanitarian crisis—it takes a village. This year’s World Humanitarian Day (WHD) draws on this metaphor of communal endeavour to increase worldwide understanding of humanitarian efforts in light of the record-high humanitarian needs around the world.

There are people who are willing to assist others whenever and wherever they are in need. They are the disaster’s actual victims, who are always the first to act, and the global community that helps them recover. They collaborate to alleviate pain and spread hope while staying out of the spotlight and the news. The experiences of individuals in need and those who assist them will be told by the United Nations via digital art. The centrepiece of the campaign, according to their official website, will be a series of exquisitely designed relief worker portraits that demonstrate the breadth and depth of humanitarian labour and collectively represent the larger humanitarian village. 

The Significance of World Humanitarian Day

  • The purpose of World Humanitarian Day is to recognize the efforts of the millions of people affected by humanitarian crises throughout the world who are helped by humanitarian workers who provide relief, hope, and assistance.
  • Every day, humanitarian efforts around the world are reducing suffering and saving lives while overcoming a number of obstacles. Currently, more than 167 million women, men, and children require protection and life-saving humanitarian aid on a daily basis.
  • Humanitarian workers typically work in front-line settings, managing and developing emergency response programs while assisting communities in rebuilding their lives following disasters, strengthening their ability to withstand future crises, advocating for their rights to be heard, and establishing long-lasting and sustainable peace and development in regions affected by natural or human disasters.
  • Humanitarian workers constantly put their own lives in danger in order to protect and deliver aid to the victims. In every crisis response, humanitarian workers are exposed to personal dangers and have little protection. In the towns and settlements of displaced people, they are subject to additional political, legal, and security threats. Humanitarian workers are occasionally targeted for notoriety or attention on a global scale.
  • In various regions of the world, there have been worries about press freedom and journalist safety. Due to ingrained gender conventions, roles, and power dynamics in society, female front-line employees are exposed to significant hazards.

World Humanitarian Day is another day of commitment and dedication to bringing positive changes in the lives of the people. World Humanitarian Day also draws attention to humanitarian needs and improves quality, compliance and accountability in responding to humanitarian crises. Working for a humanitarian organization or going to war zones are not requirements for being a humanitarian. Volunteering can be done to help those who are in need and to demonstrate your concern. In any tragedy, the first responders are always members of the local community.

This World Humanitarian Day, shed a light on the countless volunteers, professionals, and crisis-affected individuals that provide immediate medical care, housing, food, safety, water, and a lot more. Because as the saying goes: It takes a village to support people in crisis.

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