Video Statement from Minister Paradis on World Humanitarian Day

Download the video.

Location: Ottawa, Canada

Duration: 02:59

File size: 43.5MB


Today I want to take a moment to recognise those who give their time and energy to help others in need.

Whether they are in in crisis spots around the world.

Or in personal crisis right around the corner.

These interventions save lives.

They bring peace.

And they spread hope.

World Humanitarian Day was created to celebrate these devoted people.

Those that run towards the fight, not away from it.

They often work long hours, under difficult and dangerous conditions, to help those in need.

They risk great danger and endure great sacrifice.

And they do so far from home.

In Canada we have a long tradition of helping the world’s most vulnerable people.

It is a direct manifestation of the values we hold dear.

It is why Canadians across give so generously to humanitarian organisations.

When the world cries out, Canada answers.

There are more examples then I can name.

And they span the globe.

Stretching from the Philippines to the pan of Africa.

And from South America to my own back yard of Lac-Megantic.

I have seen the work that humanitarian organisations do first hand.

I have been struck by their professionalism, dedication and compassion.

And I can only imagine there are people all over the world who share that sentiment.

They apply the same unwavering commitment no matter where they are.

And they are around the world.

Day after day.

Year after year.

Putting their lives at risk to help those who need their help the most.

And our government is standing there with them.

Canada disbursed over 765 million dollars in humanitarian assistance in more than 75 countries last year.

Together with Canadian and international organisations we are making a real difference.

We are saving lives.

None of this would be possible without the efforts of those on the front lines.

The workers responding directly to natural disaster, conflict, and food insecurity around the world.

Their dedication is an inspiration to us all.

And it is a dedication that, sadly, they sometimes pay for with their lives.

Over the past year, the world lost 155 humanitarian aid workers in the line of duty.

That makes 2013 the most deadly year in a decade.

This trend needs to be drastically reversed.

Canada is, and will continue to be, a strong advocate for the safety of humanitarian workers.

Today, on World Humanitarian Day, I want to recognize their efforts and their sacrifice.

Whether you are helping here at home, or across the globe, thank you on behalf of all Canadians.