It has been nearly a year since I became minister of international development, and if this year has taught me anything, it is to reinforce how intricately connected our world is—from security to global health, inequality to climate change. Canada is intimately impacted by what is happening around the world.
“75 years ago, in the wake of the Second World War, the world was faced with a rebuilding project on a scale never before witnessed. Confronted with this monumental task, the international community turned outwards, creating the United Nations, whose architecture continues to underpin today's international order. The framers of the United Nations Charter knew that we go farther when we go together. They chose openness over isolationism, cooperation over rivalry, open palms over closed fists.
Canada is deeply concerned by the deteriorating security situation in the Sahel and is committed to minimizing its impact on people in the region, as well as responding to the increasing needs of the most vulnerable.
“On the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, we recognize the urgency of accelerating progress toward ending poverty so that no one is left behind. Through the Feminist International Assistance Policy, Canada is working to help the poorest and those in vulnerable situations by making gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls central to our efforts.”
“Over the last 4 years, global hunger has been on the rise—and COVID-19 has exacerbated this trend. The COVID-19 health crisis is threatening to create a ‘hunger pandemic’ that could bring another 132 million people into chronic hunger. Earlier this week, the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the World Food Programme [WFP] for ‘acting as a driving force in efforts to prevent the use of hunger as a weapon of war and conflict.’ The WFP is racing to reach people in 88 countries who are suffering from acute food insecurity and hunger because ‘Until the day we have a medical vaccine, food is the best vaccine against chaos.’
On the International Day of the Girl Child, we celebrate the power and promise of each and every girl born on this planet. This year’s theme—My Voice, Our Equal Future—reminds us that no matter where she is born, every girl deserves to thrive and be heard.
Today, as we celebrate the International Day of Peace and as the United Nations marks its 75th anniversary, we are reminded that the rules-based international order offers our best hope of both achieving peace and ending this pandemic. Peaceful cooperation is behind many of our greatest successes globally, nationally and within our communities.
Canadians have shown time and again how generous they can be in times of need. This willingness to help when a crisis strikes is why the Government of Canada announced that it would match donations made by individuals to help the Lebanese people following the devastating explosion in Beirut on August 4.
On this day, we honour the bravery and dedication of humanitarian workers, who work tirelessly to provide life-saving support and protection to the people most in need around the world. Every day, these real-life heroes put their own lives on the line to offer life-saving care, such as food, water, protection and health services, in response to communities affected by crises.