Friday, November 19, 2004

 

World's largest holiday card

I received this e-mail today, and had to post it. Please visit the link in the e-mail, or click on it in my sidebar.

Refugee Workers At Risk: Show Your Support
For many Americans the execution of Margaret Hassan, CARE, in Iraq was a shock, a horrifying breach of the invisible shield that has traditionally protected humanitarian workers. To me it was one more reminder of how dangerous relief work is.

Click here to sign the "World's Largest Holiday Card" going to refugee relief workers, and show them we stand behind them every day of the year: <http://thanks.unrefugees.org>.

So far we have almost 600 signatures. If you have not had a chance, please add your name and sentiments to the growing list. Then ask your friends to sign also. That way we can send our card before the holiday to those who, everyday, put themselves in harm's way to save refugee lives.

The sad truth is, around the world humanitarian workers are being deliberately targeted by armed combatants. In Afghanistan just a year ago Bettina Goislard, a 29-year old woman working for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, was killed. Gunmen pulled up to her clearly-marked UNHCR vehicle in the center of a town in Eastern Afghanistan, fatally shooting her in the neck and chest. Like Margaret Hassan, all Bettina wanted to do was help.

To thank refugee workers click here: <http://thanks.unrefugees.org>.

In Somaliland 13 months ago, Dr. Annalena Tonelli, a sixty-year old doctor renowned for decades of charity work, was shot dead by an unknown gunman outside her hospital. She had been in danger many times - kidnapped once and several times subjected to beatings. But when asked whether humanitarianism extracted too much sacrifice she said this:"There's no sacrifice. It's pure happiness. Who else on earth has such a beautiful life?"

It is hard to imagine care-givers like these deliberately targeted for death.

Please sign the World's Largest Holiday Card, a card of thanks to all the humanitarians risking their lives right now: <http://thanks.unrefugees.org>

Warmly,
Caryl GarcĂ­a
Executive Director

P.S. 65 percent of UNHCR's staff now serves in conflict zones. Please pass along this email to friends and family as a way of thanking these unsung heroes, especially now as we mourn the death of Margaret Hassan in Iraq.

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