US$384 million pledged for the Central Emergency Response Fund in 2013
(New York, 11 December 2012): More than 40 donors today pledged US$384 million to the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) at a high-level conference. Since its launch in 2006, CERF, which has an annual funding target of US$450 million, has enabled life-saving and immediate help for millions of people in some 87 countries and territories.
“From flood zones to war zones, CERF stops crises from turning into catastrophes,” said Secretary- General Ban Ki-moon. “It is the vaccine that saves a child from yellow fever or his mother from meningitis. It is the blanket that covers a refugee family when temperatures drop below freezing.”
Eleven Member States increased their pledged amounts this year as compared to their 2012 contributions. This group includes: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Estonia, Finland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.
There were ten returning donors to CERF, including Djibouti, Greece, Hungary, Indonesia, Latvia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Saudi Arabia, Uruguay and Vietnam. All pledges will allow CERF to continue helping aid agencies jump-start emergency responses during natural disasters and other crises.
“The rapid and flexible support offered by the CERF makes it a central pillar of the UN humanitarian response,” said Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Valerie Amos. “We are one of the largest supporters of UNICEF, UNHCR, WHO, UNFPA and FAO, and the sixth largest contributor to WFP. The agencies have repeatedly told us that CERF support enhances their ability to respond.”
In 2012, CERF has allocated more than $460 million allowing UN agencies and humanitarian partners to provide aid in nearly 50 countries and territories including Syria, Pakistan, South Sudan, Haiti and Niger as well as to underfunded crises in the Democratic Republic of Korea, Haiti and Pakistan. More than $110 million was allocated to help address food insecurity, natural disasters, conflict, displacement and other emergencies in eight West African countries across the Sahel region.
“CERF allocations were among the first funds received for the Sahel crisis when early warning alerts were issued in 2011,” said David Gressly, Regional Humanitarian for the Sahel. “It helped jump-start the response and fill the gaps in areas that were underfunded like agriculture, health and nutrition. CERF helped demonstrate the UN’s commitment to support the Governments’ efforts to respond to the crises.”
There are now 41 countries that are both contributors to and recipients of the Fund. In the last six years, 126 Member States, together with public and private donors, have expressed their continued support for CERF with a total contribution of more than $2.8 billion.
“Despite difficult economic circumstances, donors continue to support CERF because CERF works,” said Ms. Amos, concluding today’s pledging conference.
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