United_nations_reliefCurrently, 60 million people have been forcibly displaced globally. Ongoing conflict around the world has led to large populations to flee and start over with nothing, creating a situation where humanitarian relief agencies can’t keep up with the amount of services and funding they need.

Fortunately, in early August, UN under-secretary-general of humanitarian affairs, Stephen O’Brien, announced that $70 million had been allocated for the worst kinds of under-funded emergencies. The money comes from grants from the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) and is viewed as a last resort for aid operations.

The United Nations relief will provide much-needed resources to those who have fled their homes, in Bangladesh, Chad, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Myanmar, Somalia and Sudan.

Each country faces varying challenges, most of which have to do with conflict. Sudan and Chad, for example, will receive $20 million for basic services and protection from Sudan’s Darfur region which has endured 13 years of conflict.

Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia will receive $33 million, to deal with the recurring conflicts and climate shocks in its region. Somalia has more than 730,000 people continuously needing emergency food and nutrition assistance, also a result of the Yemen conflict with the number of people fleeing their homes.

Myanmar and Bangladesh, will receive $8 million. Both of these countries have some of the world’s most neglected communities and displaced people that need access to emergency shelter and healthcare.

Afghanistan will receive $8 million for humanitarian operations, where relief agencies have decreased services due to underfunding, although they really need to increase their services as a result of ongoing conflict.

CERF was created in 2006, has 125 member states, totaling $4.1 billion to support 95 countries and territories since 2006. It receives most of its funding from governments, as well as foundations, companies, charities and individuals by placing it into a single fund and then distributing the funds in emergency situations.

Considering the alarming amount of people that have been forcibly displaced and desperately need basic services, we should all be doing more to not only meet the basic human demands they so desperately need, but also help stabilize these areas.

Paula Acevedo

Sources: UN News Centre, Xinhua
Photo: Flickr

There many conflicts, persecution, land grabs and disasters that take place across the worlds which cause people to relocate elsewhere. This is currently a worldwide problem with nearly every continent with displaced people of its own. The typhoon that hit the central Philippines is case and point where millions are homeless and displaced.

It means it is a problem that is beyond conflicts thus efforts to help as seen from the aid pouring into the Philippines is necessary. There is an estimated 35 million displaced people in the world. This is the entire population of Canada. In the last decade, while the number of refugees has been slowly declining, the number of displaced people has greatly increased. There are various reasons for this trend. This is due to lack of willingness to welcome refuges and costs of resettlements.

Displaced people are usually left with little means to sustain themselves. They are instead thrown into the unknown conundrum of poverty where survival is an ever present challenge. Internally Displaced Persons are persons or groups of persons who have been forced or obliged to flee or to leave their homes or places of habitual residence, in particular as a result of or in order to avoid the effects of armed conflict, situations of generalized violence, violations of human rights or natural or human-made disasters and who have not crossed an internationally recognized State border according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Throughout Somalia, an estimated 350,000 of the country’s 7,000,000 inhabitants are internally displaced persons who, as a result of protracted conflict, droughts and insecurity.

The majority of people who are displaced fall into one of two categories: refugees or internally displaced people (also called “IDPs”). Refugees are people who, in order to escape conflict or persecution, have fled across an international border. Internally displaced people chose to stay within their country.

Africa is home to more displaced people than all other continents put together. People fleeing from long-standing conflicts in Uganda, Sudan, the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, and West Africa make for the majority of Africa’s displaced. The war in Colombia has forced out nearly three million people, and there are still tens of thousands of people displaced from the wars in the Balkans, even almost 10 years later. The United States has traditionally resettled more refugees each year than all other countries in the world combined. As a result of the program, American citizens themselves benefit enormously from the chance to learn from and work or go to school with people from all over the world, with vastly different life experiences – a key cornerstone of the American story.

— Alan Chanda

Sources: Internal Displacement Monitoring Center, Relief Web
Photo: Vintage 3D