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Humanitarian organizations

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees was established on December 14, 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly. The agency is mandated to lead and co-ordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide. Its primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. It strives to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another State, with the option to return home voluntarily, integrate locally or to resettle in a third country. In more than five decades, the agency has helped an estimated 50 million people restart their lives. Today, a staff of around 6,300 people in more than 110 countries continues to help 32.9 million persons. Slovakia provides regularly voluntary contributions to the UNHCR budget and holds an observer status in the Executive committee of the UNHCR. More information can be found on the web page www.unhcr.org.

International Organization for Migration (IOM)

Established in 1951, IOM is the leading inter-governmental organization in the field of migration and works closely with governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental partners. With 125 member states, including Slovakia, a further 18 states holding observer status and offices in over 100 countries, IOM is dedicated to promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. It does so by providing services and advice to governments and migrants. IOM works to help ensure the orderly and humane management of migration, to promote international cooperation on migration issues, to assist in the search for practical solutions to migration problems and to provide humanitarian assistance to migrants in need, including refugees and internally displaced people. The IOM Constitution recognizes the link between migration and economic, social and cultural development, as well as to the right of freedom of movement.
IOM works in the four broad areas of migration management:

  • Migration and development
  • Facilitating migration
  • ·Regulating migration
  • Forced migration

IOM activities that cut across these areas include the promotion of international migration law, policy debate and guidance, protection of migrants' rights, migration health and the gender dimension of migration.
In the case of Slovakia, the Migration Office of the Ministry of Interior is responsible for expert issues regarding migration and Slovakia. More information can be found on the web pages www.iom.int, www.minv.sk.
 

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) is a United Nations body formed in December 1991 by General Assembly Resolution 46/182. The resolution was designed to strengthen the UN's response to complex emergencies and natural disasters by creating the Department of Humanitarian Affairs (DHA), and replacing the Office of the United Nations Disaster Relief Coordinator, which had been formed in 1972. The OCHA was therefore the result of a 1998 reorganization of the DHA and was designed to be the UN focal point on major disasters. Its mandate was also expanded to include the coordination of humanitarian response, policy development and humanitarian advocacy. OCHA has some 1,064 staff, distributed across the world, with some support staff in New York City and Geneva. Major OCHA country offices are located in Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Guinea, Ivory Coast, the Palestinian Territories and Sudan. Regional offices are located in Panama City, Dakar, Nairobi, Johannesburg, Dubai and Bangkok. In case of natural disasters or military conflicts when there is a need to provide humanitarian relief, Slovakia is among those countries, which provide humanitarian financial assistance to countries and people in need. More information can be found on web pages http://ochaonline.un.org, www.reliefweb.org.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is an impartial, neutral and independent organization whose exclusively humanitarian mission is to protect the lives and dignity of victims of war and internal violence and to provide them with assistance. It directs and coordinates the international relief activities conducted by the Movement in situations of conflict. It also endeavours to prevent suffering by promoting and strengthening humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles. The ICRC was established in 1863. Slovakia cooperates with the ICRC also through its partner organization, the Slovak Red Cross. More information can be found on web pages www.icrc.org, www.redcross.sk.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)

IFRC is the world's largest humanitarian organization, providing assistance without discrimination as to nationality, race, religious beliefs, class or political opinions. Founded in 1919, it comprises 186 member Red Cross and Red Crescent societies, a Secretariat in Geneva and more than 60 delegations strategically located to support activities around the world. The Federation strives, through voluntary action, for a world of empowered communities, better able to address human suffering and crises with hope, respect for dignity and a concern for equity. Mission is to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity. Often, these are victims of natural disasters, poverty brought about by socio-economic crises, refugees, and victims of health emergencies. The IFRC carries out relief operations and combines this with development work to strengthen the capacities of its member National Societies. The Federation's work focuses on four core areas: promoting humanitarian values, disaster response, disaster preparedness, and health and community care. The role of the Secretariat in Geneva is to coordinate and mobilize relief assistance for international emergencies, promote cooperation between National Societies and represent these National Societies in the international field. The role of the field delegations is to assist and advise National Societies with relief operations and development programs, and encourage regional cooperation. The Federation, together with National Societies and the International Committee of the Red Cross, make up the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. More information can be found on web pages www.ifrc.org, www.redcross.sk.

Last Update Date: 8.2.2016 Create Date: 21.4.2009