For information only - not an official document

17 August 2012

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:

"People Helping People: Commemoration of World Humanitarian Day"

Message on World Humanitarian Day,
19 August 2012

VIENNA, 19 August (UN Information Service) - This year's World Humanitarian Day presents an historic opportunity to bring together one billion people from around the world to advance a powerful and proactive idea: People Helping People.

That is the best way to honour the many fallen aid workers we mourn today, and to celebrate the efforts of others who carry on their noble mission by rushing assistance to those who are suffering.

The spirit of solidarity that animates these courageous efforts drives our commemoration of World Humanitarian Day.

I have seen that spirit in my travels around the world, as I meet with relief workers who leave the comforts of their own homes to aid others in need.

I also saw that spirit earlier this month when I met Beyoncé Knowles, the superstar who is donating her song, "I Was Here," to our global campaign promoting action for a better world.

Millions of people have already gone to our website to register their support and share their actions.  From international efforts to avert a hunger crisis in West Africa to urgent assistance to civilians in Syria to a single good deed from one neighbour to the next, the spirit of People Helping People improves conditions for all.

Let us give meaning to World Humanitarian Day by registering acts of good on the website:  Individual actions may seem small, but collectively they will reverberate around the world, generating unstoppable momentum for a better future.

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