World Humanitarian Day is an annual, global celebration of people helping people.

World Humanitarian Day

Beyonce performed for the UN in New York.

Every year thousands of human aid workers help other people regardless of who they are and where they are. The lives of millions of people worldwide are threatened every day by natural disasters, gender-based conflict, political conflict, hunger, and migration. The global economic crisis has created an increasing number of problems such as poverty and a decline in global health. Hence, more and more humanitarian aid workers are needed across the globe. In addition, the total number of people affected by natural disasters is rising: approximately 211 million people are directly affected each year.

Today’s date, August 19th, marks the day in 2003 when the United Nations headquarters in Baghdad was bombed and 22 members of UN staff died. World Humanitarian Day honors humanitarian causes and the lives that have been lost in the cause of duty.

This year’s theme for World Humanitarian Day is ‘I was here.’ ‘I was here’ is an awareness campaign trying to promote everyone to do something good, to someone, somewhere. Pop star and icon Beyonce performed a song “I was here” at the UN headquarters in New York last Saturday, the 11th, to honour World Humanitarian Day. A music video has been made of the event and the performance will be aired today. The goal of this year’s World Humanitarian Day is to get 1 billion people visit the online site, watch the music video, and learn more about World Humanitarian Day campaign.

World Humanitarian Day is commemorated each year on
19th August and gives special recognition to all humanitarian, UN and other personnel who have worked in the promotion of the humanitarian cause. The day is a collaborative global celebration of humanitarian aid work joining the United Nations and over 500 national and international NGOs, aimed at engaging and inspiring the general public to get involved.  It especially commemorates those who have lost their lives in the cause of duty. It marks the day on which the then Special Representative of the Secretary-General to Iraq, Sérgio Vieira de Mello and 21 of his colleagues tragically lost their lives in the bombing of the UN Headquarters in Baghdad on 19 August 2003.