ABU DHABI // Abu Dhabi will help launch the UN's annual humanitarian fund-raising campaign next week. The 2009 Humanitarian Appeal seeks to raise US$7 billion (Dh25.7 billion) to help 30 million people suffering from war, poverty, natural disasters and disease in 31 countries. The launch in Abu Dhabi will follow the launch last week in Geneva, when Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general, said the campaign was seeking almost double last year's appeal of US$4.7 billion.
UN officials expect the appeal for 2009 to continue to rise throughout the year as escalating food prices force more people into poverty. The Abu Dhabi launch, on Monday at the Sheraton Hotel, will be hosted by Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed, Deputy Prime Minister and President of the UAE Red Crescent Authority. Sheikh Hamdan offered to host the launch of the appeal this year to try to raise regional awareness of the fund.
Dr Mohammed Anwar Gargash, the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, and Antonio Guterres, the UN high commissioner for refugees, will also attend the event. Proceeds from the UN's annual appeal will go toward funding the Consolidated Appeals Process (CAP), a co-ordinated relief strategy managed and planned by the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs. The CAP strategy, which began in 1992, aims to channel donor money to those issues and crises that are most in need.
This year's CAP will go to about 360 aid organisations, including specialised UN agencies, non-governmental organisations and other international bodies, the UN said. firstname.lastname@example.org