The World Humanitarian Day is celebrated annually on 19 August, and it pays tribute to aid workers who risk their lives in humanitarian service, and rallies support for people affected by crises around the world. The highest numbers of Humanitarian workers are young people. Therefore, in there challenging times, we highlight the importance of international actions, as the 2030 Agenda, the Paris Agreement, and the SDGs, for addressing the causes like climate change, poverty, and inequalities, underpinning humanitarian crises.
Last year, 475 aid workers were attacked, where 108 were killed, 242 were wounded, and 125 were kidnapped. This year, the World Humanitarian Day, highlights the immediate human cost of the climate crisis by pressuring world leaders to take meaningful climate action for the world’s most vulnerable people. Hence, the theme is “In the race against the climate crisis, we can’t leave anyone behind.” The climate emergency is wreaking havoc across the world at a scale that the humanitarian community and people at the front lines cannot manage.
This year alone, 235 million people will need humanitarian assistance and protection. This number has risen to 1 in 33 people worldwide - a significant increase from 1 in 45 at the launch of the Global Humanitarian Overview 2020, which was already the highest figure in decades. Hence, on this day, for the safety and security of aid workers let us bring together partners from across the humanitarian system to advocate for the survival, well-being, and dignity of people affected by crises.
The World Assembly of Youth (WAY) supports this Day by honouring those young women and men who have tirelessly improved countless lives, and showcasing incredible strength along the way. We also pay special tribute to the real-life heroes who have committed their lives to helping others in the most extreme circumstances throughout the world. Since 1949, we stand strong for human rights and shall get the world racing against the climate crises clock. It is an appropriate moment to call for a renewed commitment to humanitarian principles by all concerned.
On this World Humanitarian Day, let us once again remember the millions of people in need of help around the world, the humanitarians who have lost their lives and loved ones in the course of their work as well as the thousands of aid workers who have refused to be deterred and followed in their footsteps. Join us in celebrating these heroes, who are even more worthy of our admiration and celebration.