Funding Relief: Prioritizing International Aid

Today there was a meeting organized by the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs to address the High-level Panel on Humanitarian Financing.

The insufficiency of the $25 billion that the world spends to provide for the 125 million people struck by natural disasters and wars shows the striking need to a solution on providing for these people. A nine-person panel assigned by the UN Secretary-General aims to close this financial gap with three aspects of the challenge: reduce the needs, mobilize additional funds, and improve the efficiency of humanitarian assistance.

The briefing began with an introduction by Mr. Eliasson. Regarding Syria, he said that “this is the time for unprecedented humanitarian needs.” He introduced Ms. Georgieva, a co-chair of the panel. She retold a conversation she had with a Syrian girl who wished she could go to school. She believes it is necessary to aid those like the Syrian girl by implementing funds in more efficient ways.

To deal with the growing needs, the panel suggested to address their root causes by allocating to peace operations, setting up emergency reserve funds for countries at risk of natural disasters, and increasing the current level of funding of the Crisis Response Window by at least threefold. The panel also proposed that all states should contribute to humanitarian action rather than solely relying on ODA donors. The private sector, media, and humanitarian organizations should encourage raising funds. The panel also introduced a Grand Bargain, an agreement for organizations and donors to not only give more, but also give better, being more flexible and improve response time.

Lastly, the ambassador for PR in UAE stated how impactful the aid is and how fitting the proposed solutions are. The meeting was adjourned with an open floor for questions and comments.

Meeting:  “Too important to fail – addressing the humanitarian financing gap”

Date/Location: Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016; 10:15-11:15; Conference Room 7

Speakers: H.E. Jan Eliasson, Deputy Secretary-General; Ms. Kristalina Georgieva, Bulgaria, Vice President for Budget and Human Resources, the European Commission; HRH Sultan Nazrin Shah, Malaysia, Ruler of Perak, Malaysia; Ambassador for Public Relations in the United Arab Emirates

Written By: WIT Representative Jin Yoo

Edited By: WIT Representative Alex Margolick

Photo Credit: Gokhan Sahin via Getty Images

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