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

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s MDG Advocacy Group’s Breakfast Session

un_newsFollowing the opening of the 69th UN General Assembly debate, the MDG advocacy group Co-Chaired by H.E. Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda and H.E. Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Norway, spoke at a breakfast gathering to showcasing the successes of the eight MDGs to deliver a more healthier, equitable and more sustainable future, and launching the MDG Advocates’ Leaders Report.

H.E. Ban Ki Moon elucidated that he established the advocacy group 5 years ago to mobilize support from members states, civil society, academia, parliaments and private sector to develop new and ground-breaking ideas and ways to accelerate the MDG implementations. He called the MDG advocacy group superheroes fighting to end extreme poverty. He then advocated for the support of the 17 new SDGs. Further the Co-Chairs of the advocacy group both pointed out that we can all be advocates of the MDGs.

President Kagame elucidated that the amount of time left for the expiration of the MDGs should not matter and the MDGs are a “floor not a celling” because being on track does not mean problems are solved. Prime Minister Solberg spoke of the courage of Malala Yousafzai, one of the contributed of the report, who she said is currently at school using her right to be educated. Next she asked us all to do “everything we can to prevent and end conflict while making sure that the generation of people living through these conflicts have access to education and health”.

Professor Jeffery Sacks promoted organizing and funding as a crucial means to solving problems in the world. Two speakers responded to his challenge. Prime Minister Solberg pledging that Norway will help bring quality education to a million more children in conflict areas. In addition, H.H. Sheikha Moza bint Nasser elucidated that her foundation “Educated A Child” has supported 2.5 million children in 33 countries and their goal is to reach 10 million children by the 2015 – 2016 school year.

Meeting Title: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s MDG Advocacy Group’s Breakfast Session, Organized by the The MDG Advocacy Group & The Roll Back Malaria Partnership (RBM).
Date: September 25th, 2014
Location: Delegates Dining Room, United Nations HQ, New York
Speakers: Opening remarks by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Co-Chairs HE Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, and HE President Paul Kagame of Rwanda. Other Speakers HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, Christine (Stine) Bosse, CEO of TrygVesta Group, Chairman of Børnefonden / The Childrens’ Fund (Denmark), Ray Chambers, United Nations Special Envoy for Financing the Health Millennium Development Goals and For Malaria (United States), Dho Young-shim, Chairperson of the UN World Tourism Organization’s Sustainable Tourism for Eliminating Poverty (ST-EP) Foundation (Republic of Korea), Robert Edward Turner – III, Philanthropist, Chairman of the United Nations Foundation (United States), Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs, United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on the MDGs (United States), Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Peace Prize Winner, founder of the Grameen Bank (Bangladesh), Philippe Douste-Blazy , United Nations Special Advisor on innovative financing for development (France), with the participation of Dr. Fatoumata Nafo-Traoré, RBM Executive Director
Written By WIT Representative: Modou Cham
Edited by WIT Representative: Aslesha Dhillon 

Financing the Sustainable Development Agenda

Ecology_Society_Economy_diagram_Environment_backgroundCo-Chairs, H.E. the Ambassador of Kenya and H.E. the Ambassador of Hungary, gave a brief summary of the progress from the fourth session of the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing, and the way forward leading up to mid-august when the proposal will be given to the attention of the secretary general. The committee’s major concern is quantifying needs across all three areas of Sustainable development especially the social and environmental elements. Quantifying the financial need of socio-climates amounts to an immense task however H.E. the Ambassador of Kenya was confident the committee would be able to reach a consensus on an effective financial document and policy implementation in the near future.

Co-Chair H.E. the Ambassador of Hungary expressed his belief that previous funding towards sustainable development neglected the private sector and for the most effective policies the international system should combine public and private assets. The private sector now has a much stronger role in the international trading system especially in states that have show substantive economic improvement such as China, India and Brazil. H.E. emphasized the role of private trade as a means of providing employment opportunities, new industries and income tax to developing and developed states.

H.E. Ambassador of Kenya reflected on the effective dialogues shared in Latin America and Africa. These ESCA organized outreach efforts provide platforms for discussion between states, stakeholders and regional experts. The meetings are an effort to reach out for feedback and to facilitate regional input for a holistic financial network in support of sustainable development. These outreach programs will next meet for discussion on finances from the Asian and Pacific region.

The Co-Chairs anticipate that the committee’s dynamic work will amount to concrete actionable policies for the long term funding of sustainable development incorporating state leaders, private funders and civil societies.

 

Meeting Title:Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing (Fourth Session) – Open briefing on the progress of the Committee’s work by the co-chairs
Speakers: Co-Chairs; H.E. Ambassador of Kenya and H.E. Ambassador of Hungary, as well as questions from H.E. Ambassador of Singapore, Norbert Kloppenburg, Canada, Switzerland and Djibouti
Location: United Nations HQ, New York
Date: 16 May 2014
Written by WIT representative: Sophia Griffiths-Mark