World Humanitarian Day 2019

by ACT

  • Posted on August 16, 2019

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“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

– Martin Luther King Jr.

Today, all over the world an unprecedented number of people are living through humanitarian crises. Armed conflict, natural disaster, people migration, disease and violent persecution have forced more than 70 million people from their homes and no continent is excluded.

The sufferings of so many human beings all over the world may or may not be avoidable; the reality is that it is happening, even at this very moment.

What is the rest of the world doing?

Somehow, it seems that much of the rest of the world has delegated the task of doing something about humanitarian crises to just the few professional humanitarian workers, mostly under the auspices of the UNHCR and other humanitarian agencies.

On 19th August, the world is commemorating World Humanitarian Day to recognise and pay tribute to aid workers who risk their lives in humanitarian crisis. It is a day to honour both those who have lost their lives or have been injured during their work while celebrating their contribution to humanity.

Granted these are people who mostly have been trained to know how to respond to such crises, but it does not free the rest of humankind from doing something too, however small. To be humanitarian is to be concerned with human welfare and seeking to do something about it. Should not every human being therefore be humanitarian? After all it could be me or you, unexpectedly, needing help?

Humanitarian challenge in DR Congo

The danger to life of humanitarian workers as always been high on the African continent.  In 2017, two UN investigators were brutally murdered in the Democratic Republic of Congo. This year, a doctor helping to deal with the humanitarian crises in that country was murdered. The DRC has suffered a string of conflicts since the 1990s with its civil war being the deadliest conflict in modern African history with more than 5 million casualties. Currently, the country is facing the crises of the spread of the Ebola virus in addition to the on-going civil war.

The UN reported that the humanitarian situation in DR Congo is “dramatically deteriorating”. It is estimated that 1.9 million children under five are severely acutely malnourished and more than 7 million children in the country are out of school due to conflict and lack of access.

After two decades of unrest, it is an understatement to say that the education sector in DR Congo has been intensely hit. With so many children displaced as a consequence of the conflict, the ones left behind are forced to work to help provide for their families, instead of going to school. These children are not only losing out their right to education, they are also losing out on their right to enjoy their childhood and have a better future.

 ACT humanitarian effort

At ACT, our main aim is to relieve poverty and advance development in Africa by providing education to disadvantaged children. We have been educating disadvantaged children and orphans in DR Congo since 2016, in cooperation with the Lighthouse School in Lubumbashi. We are supporting the children with school uniforms, school shoes, daily meals, and essential school materials. We are helping to pay teachers’ salaries by paying school fees for the children. Our support is helping to keep the children in school and provides relief for single mothers (widows) and guardians, most often, grandmothers.

You can make a difference; join us in educating the children otherwise forgotten. To find out more about sponsoring an orphan or disadvantaged child in Africa, please click here.

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