IFRC Statement on Rio+20
RIO DE JANEIRO, June 22, 2012 /CNW/ - One message rings loud and true as
Rio +20 comes to a close: we must listen to and invest in people's
abilities to bring about long lasting development in their communities.
We cannot count on governments alone to solve the world's problems and
meet the needs of the most vulnerable.
The "we" refers to all partners needed for strengthening resilience and
development, namely civil society organizations, Red Cross and Red
Crescent Societies, the UN, the private sector, local communities and
governments. We all must work closely as a team and make sure that
resources reach the most vulnerable. Our innovative partnership with
the global business community and the World Economic Forum-through the
Friends of Rio call to action-is an example of converting this rhetoric
into action. We urge Governments to provide an enabling environment for
this and the many other sustainable development initiatives.
Sustainable development will not be shaped by a document that comes out
of Rio +20 but determined by how well we mobilize the power of humanity
for action. The message and the needs are clear - vulnerable and
marginalised populations need our support.
The best support we can give is to work closely with people and their
communities, often through Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers, who
have the knowledge and initiative to drive long-term solutions that
promote resilience and in turn, sustain development.
In fact, one theme that emerged again and again at the Rio +20
Conference events and discussions was recognizing women as key
stakeholders in development approaches.
Take the pressing issue of food security for example: in some countries
60% of the agricultural labour force is made up of women. As fathers,
brothers and sons leave rural areas to seek work and secure income, the
focus on women and support for smallholder farmers has become urgent.
Breaking the chronic cycle of food insecurity requires policies and
laws that protect women's rights and also to facilitate access to
farmland, favorable small-business loans and - crucially - to education
Creating the space for women to a play greater role in their environment
builds resilience. Building resilience creates strong communities;
strong communities create strong economies and ultimately sustain
development. Bottom line, building resilience is key to protecting
long-term development gains.
As part of our investment to build resilience, the International
Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies is committed to
allocating up to 10% of appeals for disaster risk reduction. We are now
calling on others - many of whom have been talking these past eight
days about sustainability - to also commit more funding towards
long-term efforts to build resilience.
Cutting through the clutter of tens of thousands of people, dozens of
important issues and the debate over the outcomes of Rio+20, the
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has
one thing to say after our time in Rio: governments, donors, the corporate sector and the humanitarian sector
must invest more in strengthening the resilience of people and their
communities most at risk to crises and disasters.
Finally, we would like to applaud and thank the Brazilian Red Cross for
their support and the Brazilian government for creating the space for
an event that brought the world's attention to sustainable development.
For further information:
Susie Chippendale, +41799592536, firstname.lastname@example.org