14 January 2010
Press Release
ECO/173

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

New United Nations-Business Website to Support Humanitarian Relief


Efforts, Development Goals, While Identifying System-Wide Needs


One-stop Gateway business.un.org Will Broker Partnerships

With Private Sector, Facilitate Donations, Highlight Success Stories


As news of the devastating earthquake dramatically underlines the urgency of broad support for humanitarian relief and assistance, the United Nations is launching a new website designed to match the needs of entities of the Organization with the resources and capacities of the private sector.


The new United Nations-Business partnership gateway –- business.un.org -– will allow companies willing to contribute to the United Nations to browse through a catalogue of humanitarian needs (including relief-for-Haiti appeals) and partnership opportunities, or simply to submit ideas for collaboration.  Based on shared interests, the site flags potential matches to be connected directly.


At the same time, business.un.org offers United Nations agencies interested in private-sector support the opportunity to identify and describe needs and preferences, covering nearly all operations of the Organization, from humanitarian relief to poverty reduction and HIV/AIDS prevention.


Bringing together more than 20 United Nations bodies, the new site is a joint effort coordinated by the United Nations Global Compact and the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.  While many of the entities involved have partnered with business for years, companies have in the past expressed frustration over the lack of a single entry point identifying the Organization’s needs across the multitude of specialized agencies, funds and programmes.  Many of the site’s features follow recommendations made in an assessment of the United Nations response to the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.


The launch marks the first time that one interface for business engagement is available for nearly the entire United Nations system.  While some needs are already in place, especially appeals for support of the Organization’s efforts in Haiti, participating agencies, funds and programmes, as well as businesses around the world, have been invited to register and populate the site in the coming weeks.  Currently only available in English, the site will be launched in all official United Nations languages by mid-2010.


Business.un.org was developed by Global Hand, a Hong Kong-based non-governmental body specializing in matching services for non-profit and for-profit organizations that partner to help a world in need.  The United Nations Foundation provided funding for the project.


Media Contacts:  Nicholas Reader, Deputy Spokesperson/Public Information Officer, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), reader@un.org, +1 212 963 4961, +1 646 752 3117 (mobile); Matthias Stausberg, Spokesperson, United Nations Global Compact, stausberg@un.org, +1 917 367 3423; and Sally Begbie, International President, Global Hand, sallybegbie@globalhand.org, +852 9180 9260 (mobile).


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For information media • not an official record