Minister Paradis Reinforces Canadian Leadership in Response to Humanitarian Crises

News and Press Release
Originally published
View original

Canada’s partnership with the Canadian Red Cross is saving lives around the world

September 4, 2014 – Vancouver, British Columbia – Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

Today, the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, was joined by Conrad Sauvé, Secretary General and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Red Cross, to announce increased support through the Canadian Red Cross , that will allow Canada to provide timely, efficient and effective support in response to humanitarian crises around the world.

"Canada’s humanitarian assistance reflects the best of Canadian values. Over more than forty years, Canada has worked with the Canadian Red Cross to ensure we are prepared to respond to natural disasters, health epidemics and conflicts across the globe," said Minister Paradis. "Quickly reaching people in need of food, water and essential supplies can be a matter of life or death. Canada’s assistance is saving lives, alleviating suffering, and maintaining the dignity for those touched by tragedy."

In June 2012, Canada and the Canadian Red Cross established a strategic partnership to strengthen Canada’s humanitarian response capacity. Part of this partnership is the Enhanced Emergency Disaster Assistance Fund (EDAF), which has increased Canada’s capacity to provide assistance to people in need by ensuring a response to disasters within 48 hours. In addition, through the EDAF, the Canadian Red Cross manages Canada's stockpiles of emergency relief supplies, based in Mississauga, Ontario, and the recently established one in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. These stockpiles comprise relief items that are designed to meet the basic needs of crisis-affected populations such as tents, tarps, jerry-cans to safely transport water, and kitchen sets.

"The contribution and commitment being made by the Government of Canada will serve to strengthen our shared goal of providing vital humanitarian assistance to people around the world in their time of need”, said Conrad Sauvé. “Disasters and emergencies have devastating impacts and together we can translate the compassion of Canadians into real and meaningful help".

The Minister made the announcement following a consultation with British Columbia non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) on Canada’s global leadership on maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH). Minister Paradis and his Parliamentary colleagues are travelling across the country this summer to consult Canadians and Canadian NGO’s on MNCH, Canada’s number-one development priority, and more broadly, Canada’s global development programming.

While in Vancouver, Minister Paradis will also host round tables with British Columbia’s Ukrainian community to seek input on what Canada can do to support Ukraine’s transition to a prosperous democracy. He will also lead a round table on extractives to discuss Canada’s efforts to promote the responsible development of natural resources in developing countries.

Quick Facts

•The Canadian Red Cross Society is one of 187 national Red Cross and Red Crescent societies that are part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, the largest humanitarian network in the world.

•Canada provided more than $769 million in humanitarian assistance in 2013–2014. This response helped meet the needs of those affected by conflict and food insecurity in 54 countries and by natural disasters in 25 countries.

•Since its creation, Canada has committed more than $12.5 million to the EDAF and deployed Canada’s emergency relief stockpiles 14 times.

•Prime Minister Harper hosted the Saving Every Woman, Every Child: Within Arm’s Reach Summit in Toronto in 2014. At the Summit, Canada committed an additional $3.5 billion to continue support through to 2020, and reaffirmed global consensus on a shared commitment to end the preventable deaths of mothers, newborns and children under the age of five within a generation.


Sandrine Périon
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Development and La Francophonie

Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
Follow us on Twitter: @DFATD_DEV