Yaoundé, 19 August 2022 - World Humanitarian Day (WHD), held every 19 August, is an annual occasion to increase public awareness about humanitarian assistance worldwide. It is also an opportunity to commemorate humanitarian workers who have been killed and injured in the course of their work, and to honour those who continue to take risks every day to provide life-saving aid to people in need.
On WHD 2022, UN Secretary-General, António Guterres acclaims humanitarians stating that: “There is a saying It takes a village to raise a child. It also takes a village to support people living through a humanitarian crisis. This village includes affected people who are always first to respond when a disaster strikes. Neighbours helping neighbours. It includes a global community pulling together to support them as they recover and rebuild.” Indeed, due to a multiplicity of crises, including conflict, climate change, epidemics, poverty, hunger, and unprecedented levels of displacement, there has never been a higher number of people who need humanitarian assistance. Humanitarians everywhere courageously dedicate themselves to serving those in need.
The Humanitarian Coordinator in Cameroon, Matthias Z. Naab, highlights that local actors, often first responders and at the heart of humanitarian responses, are critical to the success of humanitarian action. “They provide an invaluable understanding of local challenges and potential solutions, are able to mobilize local networks, and offer greater access to affected populations, hence contributing to a more effective, efficient, and sustainable humanitarian response with an enhanced accountability to affected populations.”
In Cameroon, nine out of ten regions continue to be impacted by three complex, protracted, humanitarian crises caused by continuous violence in the Lake Chad basin, insecurity in the North-West and SouthWest regions, and the presence of over 325,000 refugees from the CAR in the eastern regions. In 2022,
3.9 million people need humanitarian assistance in Cameroon. The Humanitarian Response Plan 2022 requires US$ 376 million to provide humanitarian support to a targeted 2.6 million people in need of urgent assistance. However, issues related to underfunding of the humanitarian response, insecurity, movement restrictions, poor road conditions, and climatic hazards pose real access challenges for humanitarians to effectively reach and assist people in need. “Failing to act will mean thousands of girls, boys, women, and men will not be able to access health, protection, food, nutrition, water and sanitation, shelter, and education services” says Mr. Naab.
The UN will continue collaborating actively and closely with the Government of Cameroon to support efforts at improving the living conditions of affected populations across the country and to Leave No One Behind.
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.