60 Days for 60 Million Displaced People

OTTAWA, April 22, 2016 /CNW/ - The members of the Humanitarian Coalition unveiled today a national campaign in the lead up to World Refugee Day, on June 20th, to raise awareness and funds for the 60 million people displaced around the world.

Supported by the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, and Arif Virani, Parliamentary Secretary for the Honourable John McCallum, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, the "Help Them Dream Again" campaign aims to mobilize all Canadians in support of refugees worldwide, with a particular focus on children. 

Together, they call on Canadian humanitarian organizations and the corporate sector to join the campaign and encourage all Canadians to get involved.

"Today we start a 60 day countdown to World Refugee Day on June 20th – 60 days for the 60 million people forcibly displaced from their homes due to disasters, conflict and crises. More than half of this number are children. We've seen so much generosity and compassion from Canadians for the Syrian refugees.  We ask Canadians to see this as an opportunity to better understand and support the millions of refugees who will never make Canada their home and the efforts underway to assist them around the world," said Patricia Erb, Chair of the Humanitarian Coalition and President & CEO of Save the Children.

Humanitarian Coalition members CARE Canada, Oxfam Canada, Oxfam-Quebec, Plan International Canada and Save the Children are proud to collaborate with trusted partners such as the UNHCR Canada, World Vision Canada, Islamic Relief Canada and the Canadian Foodgrains Bank to promote the needs of refugees and displaced people worldwide. The participation of other Canadian international NGOs is welcome as the campaign unfolds.

"Behind the numbers, refugees are ordinary people facing extraordinarily difficult situations. From Yemen to Jordan, from Cameroon to Kenya, refugees need our attention, but also the care and assistance they need to rebuild their lives. We welcome this campaign by Canadian partners to highlight the plight of refugees around the world," said Minister Bibeau.

The campaign has already enlisted the backing of key corporate and media partners, and an official announcement will be made once agreements have been finalized. In the meantime, Canadian businesses are encouraged to join this effort.

''All over the world, people are leaving their homeland due to war and conflict. Canada is strongly committed to resettling refugees from all around the world and 2016 is expected to be the most ambitious resettlement year in Canadian history. I thank Canadians for showing our values of compassion, kindness, and generosity by supporting this campaign,'' said Mr. Virani.

"UNHCR has been calling for more support and increased solidarity with refugees all over the world.  We are happy to support this campaign by Canadian humanitarian agencies, which is yet again another demonstration of Canada's longstanding commitment to help and assist refugees," said Furio De Angelis, UNHCR Representative in Canada.

Canadians can learn more and help raise their voice for the 60 million displaced people at www.worldrefugeeday.com

Together, we can save more lives.

The Humanitarian Coalition is Canada's only joint appeal mechanism. It is comprised of CARE Canada, Oxfam Canada, Oxfam-Québec, Plan International Canada and Save the Children Canada. With a combined presence in more than 120 countries, we bring together Canada's leading aid agencies to finance relief efforts in times of international humanitarian crises. We work together to eliminate unnecessary competition, reduce the duplication of fundraising costs, and inform the public on humanitarian needs.


Media Backgrounder: World Refugee Day June 20
Help Them Dream Again Campaign

April 22, 2016

WHO:

  • With a combined presence in more than 120 countries, the Humanitarian Coalition brings together five of Canada's leading aid agencies to finance relief efforts in times of international humanitarian crises. It is comprised of CARE Canada, Oxfam Canada, Oxfam-Québec, Plan International Canada and Save the Children Canada. We work together to reduce the duplication of fundraising costs, and inform the public on humanitarian needs.

  • For this campaign, the Humanitarian Coalition is extending its reach and working with several other humanitarian agencies, including UNHCR Canada, World Vision Canada, Islamic Relief Canada and Canadian Foodgrains Bank to raise awareness of this global crisis. It is encouraging other aid organizations to get involved.

WHAT AND WHEN:

  • First marked in 2001, World Refugee Day is held every year on June 20.

  • Tens of thousands of people in more than 100 countries around the world take time to recognize and applaud the contribution of forcibly displaced people. The annual commemoration is marked by a variety of events involving government officials, humanitarian aid workers, businesses, celebrities, civilians and the forcibly displaced themselves.

WHY AND WHERE:

  • The campaign will culminate in a national day of action on June 20, on World Refuge Day. The focus is children and the theme is "Help Them Dream Again."

  • The cross-Canada campaign will craise awareness and engage the generosity of all Canadians, governments and businesses on the critical front-line work being done overseas by Canadian aid agencies in some of the world's most dangerous places.

UNPRECEDENTED CRISIS:

  • The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) estimates there are about 60 million forcibly displaced people around the world, the highest number on record. Of those, half are children! Whether through civil war and other forms of conflict, natural disasters or climate-related disasters such as drought, the global scale of displaced people is unprecedented.

  • Every day, millions of displaced people in dozens of countries are in urgent need of access to safe drinking water and sanitation services, food, shelter, medicine, education and security.

More information about World Refugee Day     
Twitter: #60DaysFor60Million  #HelpThemDreamAgain #WorldRefugeeDay

For more information: Yosé Cormier, Humanitarian Coalition 613-292-2687 yose.cormier@humanitariancoalition.ca


SOURCE Humanitarian Coalition

Image with caption: "Humanitarian Coalition Logo (CNW Group/Humanitarian Coalition)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160422_C4639_PHOTO_EN_672555.jpg

For further information: Yosé Cormier, Humanitarian Coalition, 613-292-2687, yose.cormier@humanitariancoalition.ca; Felix Corriveau, Office of the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, 613-954-1064, Felix.Corriveau@cic.gc.ca; Bernard Boutin, Office of the Minister of International, Development and La Francophonie, 343-203-5977, bernard.boutin@international.gc.ca

RELATED LINKS
www.humanitariancoalition.ca

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