Humanitarian aid and civil protection
European Commission. Directorate-General for Communication
PublisherLuxembourg : Publications Office of the European Union
MetadataShow full item record
Images of conflict and disaster fill our television screens and newspaper front pages every week. The EU helps those in need of help as quickly as possible. Through the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department (ECHO), the EU provides assistance to victims of disasters and conflicts around the world and also works to prevent humanitarian crises. This endeavour is at the very heart of its action. In line with the Union’s founding values of solidarity, respect for human dignity, equality and tolerance, it acts to protect human lives, reduce and prevent suffering and protect the dignity of those affected. The EU is present in crisis zones around the world including Syria, Afghanistan, the occupied Palestinian territory, the Sahel region and many other parts of Africa, central and South America and south-east Asia. It also runs relief operations in areas with long-running forgotten crises and post-conflict instability. Helping the world’s most vulnerable populations is a moral obligation for the international community, and the European Commission has a longstanding commitment to help the victims of such crises. Its humanitarian aid department provides relief assistance that goes directly to people in distress, irrespective of their nationality, religion, gender or ethnic origin. The activities of the European Commission are not limited to dealing with the immediate consequences of disasters. They cover the full disaster cycle: prevention, preparedness, response and recovery. This involves combining disaster response with a vast range of activities to: reduce disaster risk, for example through climate change mitigation strategies; improve preparedness for disasters, for instance by developing instruments such as early-warning systems; ensure a smooth transition when the emergency operation comes to an end, namely by mapping out suitable exit strategies; strengthen the overall resilience of populations, for example by linking emergency relief with longer-term recovery and development instruments. This publication is a part of a series that explains what the EU does in different policy areas, why the EU is involved and what the results are.
Citation“2014. Humanitarian aid and civil protection. Luxembourg : Publications Office of the European Union.”
Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged. For any use or reproduction of individual photos, permission must be sought directly from the copyright holders ; European Union.All rights reserved ; Jupiterimages.All rights reserved.Manuscript updated in February 2014.European Union document