Statement by Mr. Eddie Rowe, Humanitarian Coordinator for Sudan a.i. on World Humanitarian Day 2022
21 August 2022
“It Takes a village” "One hand doesn’t clap alone”
Khartoum - There are many ways to describe how it takes not only one person, but a community of people to come together to support people in need. This year’s World Humanitarian Day highlights this fact by commemorating and celebrating humanitarian aid workers across the world.
Humanitarian needs are at an all-time high in Sudan: 14.3 million people need assistance in 2022. These needs are driven by conflict, a political and economic crisis, increased insecurity, protracted internal displacement, food insecurity, dry spells, floods, and disease outbreaks. Support is needed now more than ever, and the role of aid workers is pivotal.
During my visits across Sudan, I have met many hard-working humanitarians, most of them Sudanese, working to support their fellow Sudanese. In an emergency, the first people to respond are always crisis-affected people themselves. They are joined by local volunteers, emergency services, local and national authorities, NGOs, UN agencies, and the Red Cross and Red Crescent, among many others. I have been impressed by their determination to provide relief for those who are in need. There is nothing more heartwarming than seeing people supporting each other - they are an inspiration for us all and role models for humanity.
As we mark this year’s World Humanitarian Day, we commemorate those we have lost. In 2021 in Sudan, 19 aid workers were attacked while responding to humanitarian crises — two of them were killed. So far this year, eight aid workers have been attacked, and none of them were killed.
I also join the Secretary-General in saluting humanitarians' dedication and courage. They represent the best of humanity indeed.
About World Humanitarian Day
- In 2008, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution designating 19 August as World Humanitarian Day. This was to commemorate the 22 humanitarian workers killed in a bomb attack on the Canal Hotel in Baghdad, Iraq, on 19 August 2003, including the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello.
- Each year on 19 August, World Humanitarian Day advocates for the survival, well-being and dignity of people affected by crises, and for the safety and security of aid workers.