Compared to this year the OCHA expects a 40 percent increase in the number of people in need of such assistance in 2021, a sign that pain, suffering, and torment caused by the outbreak of coronavirus and other problems could get worse even if hopes of a vaccine are rising
Because of Covid-19, which projects that a staggering 235 million people will need help in 2021, the United Nations(UN) humanitarian office says that needs for assistance have ballooned to unprecedented levels this year.
The coronavirus pandemic and global challenges, including conflicts, forced migration, and the impact of global warming, are the result of this.
In its latest annual Global Humanitarian Overview on Tuesday, OCHA made the projections, saying its hopes to reach 160 million of those in need will cost $35 billion. That’s more than twice the record $17 billion donors have given this year so far for the international humanitarian response, and a goal figure that is almost certain to go unmet.
The picture we’re painting this year is the bleakest and darkest view of the humanitarian needs we’ve ever put forward, and that’s because the pandemic has seen carnage across the world’s most fragile and vulnerable countries,” said Mark Lowcock, head of OCHA, UN humanitarian chief.”
“Extreme poverty will increase for the first time since the 1990s, life expectancy will decrease, and the annual death toll from HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria is set to double,” he said. “We fear that the number of people facing starvation will nearly double.”
In an overview at a UN briefing in New York, Lowcock said he believes the UN appeal is likely to raise a record $20 billion by the end of the year—$2 billion more than last year. But he said the gap between needs and funding is growing and the UN is looking for new players to come on the scene in 2021, including the new administration of US President-elect Joe Biden.
With the Red Cross and other humanitarian organisations trying to meet the rest, the UN aims to reach about two-thirds of those in need, explained Lowcock.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that as the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic continues to worsen, humanitarian aid budgets are now facing dire shortfalls, and said extreme poverty has risen for the first time in more than a generation.
“The impact of the pandemic has upended people’s lives in every nation and corner of the world,” he said. “Increasing food prices, falling incomes, interrupted vaccination programmes, and school closures are hit disproportionately hard by those already living on a knife’s edge.”
A summary, one of the most comprehensive views of the world’s humanitarian needs, has compiled almost three dozen individual response plans for a total of 56 ‘vulnerable countries.
Lowcock said the biggest problem is in Yemen, where a large-scale famine” is now at risk, saying that a primary reason is the lack of funding from Gulf countries that have been major donors in the past, leading to aid cuts and clinic closures.
The Syrian crisis and its spillover to neighbouring countries where millions of Syrians have fled to escape the more than nine-year conflict, he said, are the main financial demands.
OCHA has said that Afghanistan, Congo, Haiti, Nigeria, South Sudan, Ukraine, and Venezuela are other countries in need. Mozambique, where extremist activity has increased in the north, Pakistan, and Zimbabwe, are newcomers to this year’s list.
Lowcock said it wasn’t the pandemic that had the greatest effect on humanitarian needs, but its economic impact.
“All of these hit the poorest people the hardest of all in the poorest countries,” he said. “The hangover from the pandemic is going to be long and tough for the poorest.”