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Somalia: UN Calls For Women Involvement In Humanitarian Work

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The UN has called for more women involvement in humanitarian activities in Somalia, noting their contributions to peace building in Africa.

Werner Schultink, representative of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) made the call in a statement on Tuesday, after celebrations to mark the World Humanitarian Day in Mogadishu.

Schultink said that there was proof that humanitarian responses were more effective when women were active players in decision-making processes.

“Evidence shows that when women are involved in humanitarian action, including at the decision-making level, the humanitarian response is more effective.’’

The theme of World Humanitarian Day 2019 is on honouring the work of women in crises all over the world.

It also recognises that women make up a large number of those who risk their lives to save others, and are often the first to respond in crises, and the last to leave.

Said Hamza, Somalia’s Minister of Humanitarian Coordination and Disaster Management, said women faced tremendous challenges in crises situations.

Hamza emphasised the need to use a real platform to address these challenges for women involved in humanitarian activities.

“As the government of Somalia, we salute the women working in the humanitarian sector; and despite the challenges they are facing, their courage and patriotism in serving this country is an effort worth emulating,’’ he stated.

A veteran activist and humanitarian worker, Aisha Ugas, was nominated at the event as Somalia’s “Humanitarian Person of the Year’’ for her role in championing the rights of women and children and advocating for gender equality.

Her colleague, Amina Elmi, founder of Save Somali Women and Children, was also recognized for her role in aiding victims of gender-based violence.

Nasra Ismail, director of the Somalia Non-governmental Organisation Consortium, described Elmi and Ugas as patriots for opting to work in Somalia during its civil war.

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