Archive for the World Humanitarian Day 2011 Category

‘Harambee’ on World Humanitarian Day 2011

Posted on Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011 at 9:29 am

Anne a mother of four and guardian of seven came to Nairobi as a teenager in search of economic opportunity. Photo: Kenya, Concern Worldwide

By Kirk Prichard, Advocacy Officer, in Nairobi for Concern Worldwide US

World Humanitarian Day recognizes the sacrifices and contributions of those who give others help and hope. This year, it is a celebration of people helping people. In Nairobi, where I have been deployed on short notice to support Concern’s emergency response in the Horn of Africa, I see evidence of people helping people every day. And though international staff like myself are called on to contribute to the relief effort, it is almost entirely powered by Kenyans.

Concern’s Kenya team works in partnership with local organizations that are Kenyan-run, Kenyan-staffed, and crucially, implement Kenya-appropriate programs. It is through these partners that so-called humanitarians and aid workers—too often mistaken as solely western—are enabled to reach the poorest of the poor. Concern’s role is to monitor and assess programs, to provide technical expertise when and where it is needed, and to build the capacity of these local partners. We have been in Kenya since 2002, and we will be here for as long as that role is necessary. Read the rest of this entry »

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A Day in the Life of a Humanitarian in DR Congo

Posted on Friday, August 19th, 2011 at 9:46 am

Feargal (left) on his last day with the team before taking up a new challenge with Concern in Kinshasa. Photo: DRC, Concern Worldwide

By Feargal O’Connell, Assistant Country Director of Programs, Democratic Republic of Congo

Today is World Humanitarian Day.  According to the United Nations, today is  ’a celebration of people helping people’ and the day ‘recognizes the sacrifices and contributions of those who risk their lives to give others help and hope.’

Today is when I started biting my fingernails again.

Today at 10.21 am local time Concern’s team was stopped at a checkpoint and refused passage until 11.27 am.  The team had decided that with rising tension in an area prone to conflict, it would be prudent to temporarily relocate to the nearest city.  Read the rest of this entry »

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