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To this end, the UN Secretary General, Mr. Ban Ki-Moon, used the year's observance of World Humanitarian Day, which fell on Friday in New York to pay tribute to these dedicated women and men who brave danger to help others at far greater risk.

 

He stated that the celebration of World Humanitarian Day is an annual reminder of the need to act to alleviate the suffering.
In this vein, he urged everyone to sign on to the United Nations “World You’d Rather” campaign as well as raising awareness and building empathy.

 

The campaign,   Secretary General pointed out, has a concrete goal: to raise money for the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund and to enroll the support of individuals everywhere as Messengers of Humanity., saying that " We need everybody to demand that their societies and governments put humanity first."

 

Grouped together, he said the 130 million people in need of humanitarian assistance to survive worldwide, would comprise the tenth most populous nation on Earth.

 

"These figures are truly staggering, yet they tell only a fraction of the story.  Hidden behind the statistics are individuals, families and communities whose lives have been devastated.  People no different to you and me: children, women and men who face impossible choices every day.

 

"They are parents who must choose between buying food or medicine for their children; children who must choose between school or working to support their families; families who must risk bombing at home or a perilous escape by sea", Mr. Ban Ki-Moon said. 

 

According to him, the solutions to the crises that have plunged these people into such desperate hardship are neither simple nor quick.

 

“But there are things we can all do – today, and every day.  We can show compassion, we can raise our voices against injustice, and we can work for change", the UN Secretary General added.

 

He recalled that at the first-ever World Humanitarian Summit held earlier  this year, in Istanbul, Turkey that attracted 9,000 participants, world leaders committed themselves to transforming the lives of people living in conflict, disaster and acute vulnerability. 

 


Dilating, the UN Secretary General re-echoed that "this promise is also at the heart of the Sustainable Development Goals.  With their focus on human rights, resilience and poverty eradication, these 17 global goals offer a 15-year plan to reduce needs and vulnerability and promote a world of peace, dignity and opportunity for all".

 

In order to succeed, "on this collective journey, we need everyone to play their part, each one of us can make a difference.  On this World Humanitarian Day, let us unite in the name of humanity and show that we cannot and will not leave any one behind".

 

Source: ISD (R. Harry Reynolds, New York)