Aug 18 The United Nations is turning to social
media to raise money and awareness of humanitarian crises that
have fallen off the global agenda, said U.N.
Undersecretary-General Valerie Amos.
The United Nations will unveil the social media campaign on
Monday during World Humanitarian Day, the organization's annual
day to remember aid workers who have died while in the field and
promote humanitarian aid.
"Basically what happens every year, there are crises that
hit the spotlight (and) Syria is at the top of the agenda right
now," Amos, who also is the United Nations' emergency relief
coordinator, told Reuters. "There are places like Afghanistan,
Yemen, Haiti, Colombia, which continue to have humanitarian need
but which may have slipped off the global agenda."
Under the slogan "The World Needs More," the campaign has
partnered with entertainers and corporations to raise funds on
social networks such as Twitter.
Entertainers working with the program will tweet a word such
as "strength," "love" or "humanity," and a corporate sponsor
will donate $1 to a U.N. humanitarian fund for every retweet.
"We're going to try to put any funding that is raised, any
money raised into those countries where are appeals are
under-funded," Amos said.
Those who will participate include American pop singer
Beyonce, Indian film actor Amitabh Bachchan, Brazilian novelist
Paulo Coelho and 10-year-old American comedian Kid President.
Corporate sponsors include U.S. financial services company
Western Union, British bank Barclays, Italian
fashion house Gucci, computer chip maker Intel
and the Sergio Vieira de Mello Foundation.
The U.N General Assembly in 2008 declared Aug. 19 World
Humanitarian Day as a way to mark the 22 U.N. and aid agency
workers, including Special Representative of the
Secretary-General to Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello, who died
during a 2003 bombing of the organization's Baghdad