This Thursday is World Humanitarian Day.

I wanted to share this email with you. It's from Mike Penrose, Director of Emergency Programmes, Save the Children. It's so moving for me to work in an organisation like Save the Children. People I work with have lost friends and colleagues, and it's made even sadder because they were all making a stand for the world... making a positive difference.

Mike writes and speaks really well (if you ever get a chance to hear him speak I recommend it). He's been 'there' and seen 'that'. Horrors we can't even imagine. Today and yesterday I was working on the creation of Emergency Appeal ads for the Pakistan Floodings Appeal. I have spent hours looking at images from the last few days. Heartbreaking imagery, and the quotes are devastatingly sad. It's been a tough couple of days, sitting at my computer being moved to sadness by these images. I wonder, what would it be like 'on the field', in real life when all the senses are involved.

Oh boy. Just put my really hectic couple of workdays into perspective.


World Humanitarian Day was created a year ago to celebrate the successes of global humanitarian action and to remind the world of the risks that emergency humanitarian workers face each day.

Last year we lost 109 colleagues and friends to violence (more than UN peacekeeping), that is one of us every three and a half days, and another 92 were kidnapped, but despite these risks we delivered life saving assistance to millions of hungry, displaced and vulnerable people.

By the end of this week the Save the Children Australia emergencies team will have 5 staff members in Pakistan responding to the devastating floods currently affecting 20 million people. Over the past year we have directly responded with people, technical support and money to disasters in Indonesia, the Philippines, Afghanistan, Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Kyrgyzstan, Haiti, Samoa, Sudan, The Democratic Republic of the Congo and Somalia to name a few.

Most of us in SCA Emergencies who have been in this profession for a long period of time have lost colleagues and friends, and some of us have experienced violence first hand, but all directly or indirectly involved have made a difference. We are all part of this.

Can I ask that you go to the attached website, watch the video and read the factsheets to remind yourselves what we do, and why we do it. It is easy to get lost in statistics of disasters and the requirements of day to day life, so please remember, these are real people we talk about, real children we work with, and all have the same hopes dreams and fears as you and I.

Thank you very much for your ongoing support, and can I urge you to continue to work hard to ensure that the millions of children we serve, in Pakistan and elsewhere, are given a chance to life, happiness and opportunity.