Syria: what does it take to spark compassion?

The international community has failed so far to address the spiralling catastrophe in Syria. As Oxfam publishes its latest ‘fair share’ report on the international response to the conflict, Oxfam’s Head of Humanitarian Policy and Campaigns Maya Mailer (@MayaMailer) reflects on the recent display of public solidarity with refugees and asks what, if anything, a single photograph can change. A …

The cost of living: an introduction to humanitarianism

How much does it cost to save someone’s life after an emergency? What price do you put on dignity, safety, confidence etc?  In the run up to World Humanitarian Day Sophie Mack Smith, Communications & Knowledge Management Advisor, highlights some of the key issues which humanitarian agencies face. How much does it cost to save someone’s life after an emergency? This …

Soul-searching on World Refugee Day

On this World Refugee Day 2015, Maya Mailer (@MayaMailer), Oxfam’s Head of Humanitarian Policy & Campaigns, explains why we in civil society – and our political leaders – should be doing some serious soul-searching. We are living in a time when more people are displaced from their homes than at any time since the Second World War. And save for the …

No one ever thinks they will be called a refugee

For refugees and internally displaced persons in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan, every aspect of daily life is difficult. The crisis in Syria is also placing pressure on host communities. In the run up to World Refugee Day, Adeline Guerra, Regional Campaigns and Communications Adviser, reflects on the challenges faced by refugees and calls for more funding to help both refugees …

Oxfam’s work with refugees around the world

Refugees are ordinary people living through extraordinary times, experiencing hardship and suffering. Oxfam and other agencies are supporting refugees and IDPs according to need, including those that appear to be ‘forgotten’ by the world’s media. In the run up to World Refugee Day on 20 June here’s an overview. Burundi crisis Over the last few weeks 96, 000 people have fled …

Pledging solidarity with the people of South Sudan

By July 4.6 million people in South Sudan’s could be severely food insecure. On 16 June an aid pledging conference is being held in Geneva. Here Josephine Liebl explains why donor governments should learn from the solidarity shown by South Sudan’s people, and makes the case for aid that leads to long term change. When I visited South Sudan in February …

Sky-rocketing inflation, conflict and collapsed markets: South Sudan update

In December 2013 fighting broke out across South Sudan. Since then more than 1.5 million people have been internally displaced and over 500,000 have fled to Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan and Uganda. Here Stella Madete, information and communications lead, provides an overview of the current situation on the ground and what Oxfam is doing. Donate now  Sky-rocketing inflation, conflict and collapsed …

Nepal earthquake: many thousands in need of help

The people of Nepal are in dire need after a major earthquake struck the country, including the capital Kathmandu, on Saturday 25 April. Around 30,000 people are reportedly living out in the open in make shift camps, 3,351 people have been reported killed and more than 6,500 injured. Immediate relief and long-term disaster risk reduction is needed. Kathmandu was ever …

Cash transfer programming: can Oxfam stay ahead of the game?

Oxfam’s experience of using cash transfers in humanitarian programming dates back to the early 1990s. Here, Philippa Young, head of the emergency food security and vulnerable livelihoods team, explains how our use of cash transfers in emergencies has developed and continues to grow. Oxfam has used cash transfers to respond to a range of acute and chronic needs for over …

Changing people’s behaviours towards hand washing in emergencies

Sonya Sagan is working on a global framework for promoting hand washing  with soap, using emotional motivators to encourage behaviour change. In development contexts, hand washing programmes which focus on emotional motivators have been shown to be more impactful on behaviour than those which focus primarily on health. However there is limited documented evidence related to the use of emotional motivators …