Through August, Africare has highlighted the work of our peers that are some of the first to respond to humanitarian emergencies around the globe. Every weekday, from August 1 through World Humanitarian Day, August 19, we showcased another example of world-class humanitarian relief. When crises strike, these organizations step in to save lives, and these are some of their stories.
Rotary International is a community dedicated to the ideal of service. Rotary recently approved a $500,000 rapid response grant to combat the polio outbreak in Somalia, but they can't end polio alone. Help them raise awareness. Join Angelique Kidjo in talking, and singing, about ending polio forever.
What causes a food crisis? Why do they seem cyclical? To see how World Vision explains what is happening in the Sahel and how you can help them assist others, click here.
World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization that supports children, families and communities in nearly 100 countries to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. World Vision supports all people, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender, by providing emergency assistance in response to natural disasters and civil conflict, developing long-term solutions to alleviate poverty, and advocating for justice on behalf of the poor.
Click here to view their home page.
International Medical Corps has provided emergency medical relief in over 70 countries since their inception. Amazing!
Fartun, a Somali refugee, recently spoke with them about her experience. Read about what she has to say here.
Established in 1984 by volunteer doctors and nurses, International Medical Corps is a global, humanitarian, non-profit organization dedicated to saving lives and relieving suffering through health care training and relief and development programs. By offering training and health care to local populations and medical assistance to people at highest risk, International Medical Corps responds rapidly to emergency situations, rehabilitates devastated health care systems and helps bring them back to self-reliance.
Visit their website here.
United Nations World Food Programme
Image: Courtesy of United Nations World Food Programme
The World Food Programme knows that cash vouchers can provide a better stopgap in a crisis than food aid until local conditions stabilize. Cash transfers provide money to people who are struggling to provide food for their families. Vouchers can be redeemed for food items or "spent" in selected shops. They are used to tackle hunger in places where there is plenty of food in the marketplace, but where poor people cannot afford to buy it.
Find out more about the World Food Programme's work here!
Every year, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) leads the World Humanitarian Day charge for remembering colleagues who have lost their lives in disaster relief work. Watch the video below to see UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon give his thoughts on how to positively commemorate those we've lost, and be sure to tell them what your word is.
When 140,000 people in Pibor, South Sudan, were cut off from aid this spring, Refugees International raised the alarm. Their advocates pressed the UN and US to act, and now help is on the way!
Refugees International is a leading advocacy organization that provokes action from global leaders to resolve refugee crises. They do not accept government or UN funding, which allows their advocacy to be fearless and independent. Their recommendations are heeded by officials in the U.S. administration, the United Nations and governments around the world, whose decisions bring lifesaving solutions to refugees.
To learn more, click here.
Since 1979, Mercy Corps has worked in the world's toughest places: failing states, conflict zones and countries that have endured natural disasters, to help people survive the crises and turn them into opportunities to thrive.
Watch below to see how Mercy Corps is helping returning refugees in South Sudan rebuild their farms and feed their families.
International Rescue Committee (IRC)
The International Rescue Committee responds to the world's worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, the IRC offers lifesaving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster.
At work today in over 40 countries and in 22 U.S. cities, the IRC restores safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted and struggling to endure. The IRC leads the way from harm to home.
We honor the IRC team on the ground who deliver lifesaving aid and hope every day.
Learn more: http://www.Rescue.org
CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE implements community-based projects that emphasize working alongside women, delivers emergency aid to survivors of war and natural disasters, and helps people rebuild their lives.
CARE is motivated by the fact that even today one in eight people go to bed hungry. To see CARE's interactive exhibit on how they're changing that, click here.
CARE has also produced a slideshow of Syrian refugees and their most prized possessions that they took with them when they fled their homes. What would you take if you had to flee? For a human perspective on a problem some might not understand, click here.
Save the Children
Save the Children creates lasting change in the lives of children in need around the world. When disasters strike, Save the Children saves lives with food, medical care and education, and Save the Children stays to help communities rebuild through long-term recovery programs.
Save the Children has been working in South Sudan since 2000, implementing programs in nine of the country's 10 states. They have emergency response programs that focus on child protection and education in emergencies to ensure the children of South Sudan remain safe.
Medecins Sans Frontieres
Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) provides independent humanitarian assistance in more than 60 countries to those whose lives are threatened by violence, neglect or catastrophe. MSF also maintains the right to speak out about crises and advocate for better medical treatment.
MSF employees regularly share the stories that have stayed with them:
- An MSF pediatrician recalls a patient who she still thinks of: "She almost died multiple times a day."
- An MSF surgeon in Afghanistan remembers a young patient: "One day, a family rushed in with their 14-year-old son."
Motivated by their values of fulfilling social obligations and responding to the suffering of others, Islamic Relief responds to emergencies and promotes sustainable development in vulnerable populations world-wide, regardless of "race, political affiliation, gender or belief."
Islamic Relief UK is drawing attention to the tragic human costs of Climate Change. Their Food Solutions Campaign supports victims of malnutrition and famine caused by Climate Change, and their Disaster Risk Reduction programs prepare communities for Climate Change-related natural disasters. Islamic Relief UK reminds us that:
- The number of climate-related disasters has increased by an average of 4.1% a year from 1980 to 2010.
- The richest countries suffer the highest incidence of natural disasters but only account for 7% of the death toll. Sixty-nine people died in the San Francisco earthquake of 1989, compared to 316,000 in a quake of similar intensity in Haiti in 2010.
- Click here for more facts and figures.
Bread for the City
Bread for the City is known for their work with the homeless in Washington, D.C. This must read story describes how Bread for the City helped a women forced onto the streets and struggling for medical treatment achieve a roof over her head and medical attention at a local clinic. Read Shiloh Johnson's story here.
Bread for the City also always keeps their "doors, hearts and ears open" for individuals facing depression and other mental health difficulties. Read the stories of Fatima and Maria here.
Since 1994, Counterpart International has partnered with local organizations and 80 donors to acquire, ship and track $1 billion in humanitarian aid.
For example, through its network of 500 organizations, Counterpart International has provided aid to more than 2.5 million Armenians, totaling more than $30 million.