Mahatma Gandhi once said, “For me, humanitarian service, or service of all that lives, is religion. And I draw no such distinction between religion and politics.” There are many ideations of what it means to be a true humanitarian, but by general definition, simply put – it is “a person who seeks to promote human welfare.” From past to present, and around the world, there are individuals and groups dedicated to fulfilling a selfless mission of humanitarian services. As we approach August 19, 2022, World Humanitarian Day (WHD), we remember incredible heroes and heroines of the past, like Mahatma Gandhi or Mother Teresa, who dedicated their lives working for humanitarian causes. We also celebrate humanitarians like mission-critical aid workers, who bravely continue to sacrifice their lives to assist impacted people and communities during global crisis occurrences.
World Humanitarian Day was initially founded by the United Nations General Assembly to commemorate the deaths of United Nations aid workers. More specifically, on August 19, 2003, there was a bomb attack on the United Nations Baghdad headquarters, that resulted in 22 humanitarian aid workers deaths, including United Nations High-Commissioner of Human Rights and Special Representative of the Secretary General in Baghdad, Sérgio Vieira Mello. Subsequently, six years later (2009), the General Assembly designated August 19 as World Humanitarian Day.
At ZEDEDA, we also value humanitarian acts and empower employees to make time to volunteer as they wish. Earlier this year, during the Ukraine and Russia crisis, ZEDEDA observed that Berlin employees were requesting additional time off to aid refugees in Berlin, assist with supplies, and welcome them to the area. Subsequently, to honor these acts of kindness, ZEDEDA began to formally offer United States, India, and Berlin employees two days of volunteering time annually – and they can independently choose how to spend their volunteering days.
Last September, the company also helped the non-profit organization, Family Giving Tree, with a backpack drive, dedicated to assisting underrepresented children and supporting their education – aiming to foster diversity and inclusion in the community. ZEDEDA employees pulled together to donate 36 backpacks, six health kits, and over $500 in additional monetary expenses for school supplies. And this year, ZEDEDA is partnering with Family Giving Tree once more to donate and assist the non-profit organization in furthering their mission to help underrepresented children.
In light of World Humanitarian Day, our CEO and Founder, Said Ouissal expresses, “ZEDEDA honors World Humanitarian Day and we thank those who’ve dedicated their lives to aid others in times of crisis. As a unified team, we are actively joining together to give back to our community and reflect upon this momentous day.”
As mentioned, we’re currently supporting Family Giving Tree’s backpack drive cause, so any donations are highly appreciated. Please check out: https://vtree.fgt.org/ZEDEDA/ to learn more about the backpack drive and see how you can give back to the community in celebration of World Humanitarian Day. On behalf of the ZEDEDA team, Happy World Humanitarian Day!