DSWD Undersecretary Luzviminda C. Ilagan delivers her message honoring women humanitarian workers as part of the World Humanitarian Day celebration.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) joined the celebration of the 2019 World Humanitarian Day (WHD) held on August 19.

WHD 2019 honors humanitarian workers, especially women throughout the world, who risk their own lives to save others affected by crises.

DSWD Undersecretary Luzviminda C. Ilagan led the Department’s officials and employees in celebrating WHD during the flag raising ceremony on August 13 at Central Office, Quezon City. The Undersecretary emphasized that the purpose of the celebration is to raise awareness on the plight of civilians around the world caught in conflicts.

The Department has lined up a series of activities from August 13 to 31 to mark the event.

 “For this year, WHD pays tribute to women humanitarian workers who deserve to be celebrated. They are needed today as much as ever to strengthen the global humanitarian response, and world leaders as well as non-state actors must ensure that women and all humanitarians are guaranteed the protection afforded to them under international law,” Undersecretary Ilagan emphasized.

Undersecretary Ilagan also cited DSWD workers who continue to serve families and individuals affected by various crises such as natural disasters and armed conflicts.

“We, at DSWD, are also considered humanitarian workers because we extend a helping hand to those who need our services,” she said.

World Humanitarian Day was established in 2008 by the United Nations General Assembly and was first officially celebrated in 2009. The date of 19th August was chosen as it marks the anniversary of the bombing of the Canal Hotel in Baghdad, an event that claimed the lives of United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Sergio Vieira de Mellothe, and twenty others.

Celebrated every year on August 19, WHD honors humanitarian efforts worldwide and propagates the idea of supporting people in crisis.

This year’s WHD celebrates women humanitarians and their invaluable contribution in making the world a better place with the hashtag #WomenHumanitarians. It aims to honor the women who have acted as first responders to the darkest hours of crisis. -30-