Voices" Video Transcript
Humanitarian Appeal 2004
Transcript of video 'Hear our Voices'
14 November 2003
Kofi Annan, Secretary-General of the United Nations
People to whom I lend my voice today are the survivors of conflicts, natural
disasters and often terrible combinations of the two.
They are women, children and men, who have been forced to flee their homes,
their communities, and who have lost almost everything but their hope that
somewhere, somehow, they will find a helping hand to rebuild their homes and
We are here today to show our solidarity with them and to give them a chance
to survive and make a new start.
Aid worker 1:
People are coming to get water. So up to this moment, people are still OK.
But after April, if we don't have a response from donors it's going to be a
Aid worker 2:
Clearly, if large numbers of agricultural farmers have died, or many many of
them are ill and sick, then food production drops. And if food production
drops, people whose immune systems are already weak don't have enough to eat
and they therefore die more rapidly.
Similarly, if people whose immune systems are weak because they have
HIV/AIDS, they are people who cannot produce the food. So there is in the
relationship between food and AIDS a kind of terrible witch's brew – one
plays on the other and aggravates the other. And the victim is ultimately
the human being.
The impact on Africa is utterly devastating. It is ruining communities,
families, small households. It is yielding millions of orphans. And all of
these people are human beings. They all have faces. They all try to live.
They are all struggling to survive.
Woman from Chechnya:
They day when we received our first books, I wept with joy. When every pupil
has a notebook and a pencil on his desk and a teacher who is willing to
teach, we will be able to restore everything else.
The international community has a duty to provide life-saving assistance,
not only on the basis of which situation receives media attention, but also
on the basis of agreed definable minimum needs. We are making these appeals
on behalf of people who are in desperate need of humanitarian assistance and
protection, and I urge you to forget none of them.
Woman from (southern?) Africa:
I started last year to learn at the school, and the school helped me. I can
sign my name myself so everything I can try to make it myself.
For 2004, the United Nations and its partners are appealing for some US$ 3
billion to assist people in: Angola, Burundi, Chechnya and neighbouring
republics (Russian Federation), Central African Republic, Côte d'Ivoire,
Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo,
Eritrea, Great Lakes region, Guinea, Liberia, occupied Palestinian
territory, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Southern Africa region, Sudan, Tajikistan,
Tanzania, Uganda, West Africa region and Zimbabwe.
For Media enquires :
Stephanie Bunker – OCHA New York: Tel: +1-917-367-51-26;
Andrew Lawday – OCHA Geneva: Tel: +41-22-917-1817; Mobile: