UNESCAP News Services
Date: 11 August 2011
Media Advisory No: N/13/2011
Commemoration of the World Humanitarian Day, 19 August 2011
Bangkok (ESCAP Strategic Communications and Advocacy Section) -- In December 2008, the sixty-third session of the General Assembly designated 19 August, the date of the bombing of the UN Office in Baghdad in 2003, as World Humanitarian Day.
In an effort to raise public awareness of humanitarian assistance, the General Assembly has designated 19 August as World Humanitarian Day. The day honors those who have lost their lives in humanitarian service and those who continue to bring assistance and relief to millions. It also seeks to draw attention to humanitarian needs worldwide and to explain what humanitarian aid work entails.
This year, the day will raise awareness of what it means to be a humanitarian aid worker by describing why they do the work they do. Recent disasters in Japan and Haiti have prompted an outpouring of international solidarity and assistance at a time when the world is facing a growing number of complex challenges such as the tragic unfolding famine in the Horn of Africa. The 2011 World Humanitarian Day campaign will reflect this sense of interconnectedness and common humanity and challenge the public to think about how the actions of one person can make a difference in the world.
On behalf of the Secretary-General we would like to invite all UN staff, non-governmental organizations and the donor community to come together for a short commemoration in Thailand to honour humanitarian aid workers who have been killed or injured in the course of their work.
Friday, 19 August 2011 at 10:00 a.m., United Nations Conference Centre Main Lobby
10:00 a.m. - Opening remarks by Mr Oliver Lacey-Hall, Head of the Asia-Pacific Regional Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).
10:03 a.m. - Dr. Noeleen Heyzer, UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the UN’s Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) will make a statement to commemorate the World Humanitarian Day 2011
10:13 a.m. - A short film highlighting this year’s theme for World Humanitarian Day will be shown: “People helping People”
10:15 a.m. - Ceremony closes
For further information about the event, please contact:
Ms. Thawadi Pachariyangkun
Public Information Officer, ESCAP
T: (66) 2 288 1861, M: (66) 81 634 38 76
Public Information & Advocacy Officer
OCHA/Regional Office Asia Pacific
T: (66) 2 288 2856, M: (66) 81915 12 76
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Headquartered in Bangkok, United Nations ESCAP is the largest of the UN's five Regional Commissions in terms of its membership, population served and area covered. The only inter-governmental forum covering the entire Asia-Pacific region, ESCAP works to promote sustainable and inclusive economic and social progress. More information on ESCAP is available at www.unescap.org