Bonn During this pandemic holiday season, the UNCCD sent a showing of support to a Bonn-based charity which helps women and children. The UN organization wants to raise awareness of violence against women, but it also wanted to give back to its host city of Bonn.
This holiday season, the staff of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) sent a showing of support to a Bonn-based charity which assists women and children in need of shelter, the Haus Maria Königin. The UN organization handed over a donation check to Elisabeth Bergmann, the Facility Manager. With their initiative, the UNCCD wanted to help raise awareness on violence against women worldwide and support the humanitarian efforts of their host city.
“It is a sad truth that already in the beginning of the pandemic UN Women estimated that 243 million women and girls worldwide have faced physical
and sexual violence perpetrated by their intimate partner in the past 12 months,” says Marcos Montoiro, Head of UNCCD Staff Association. “Bonn is the home of UNCCD, and we feel it is very important that we give back to our community. With our contribution, we hope to contribute to ending violence against women, in partnership with civil society. We applaud Haus Maria Königin for providing a safe shelter to those who need it, especially in these difficult times,” he said.
UNCCD is a small organization but they managed to make a donation of 1,230 euros to the women’s shelter, all from voluntary staff contributions. Montoiro explained, “Many of us were not able to see our families in our countries of origin and have been relying on Bonn, neighbors, people, administration to stay healthy and trying to keep up with the new normality.” It was their way of giving back to Bonn, their host city.
Bergmann explained the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on Haus Maria Königin: “The COVID-19 situation hit us hard. When everyone around us locked their doors, we kept our doors open following strict health regulations. The calls for help and shelter have increased significantly since the beginning of the first lockdown and every day we receive new calls that we cannot respond to due to lack of space. At the moment more than 100 homeless women, some with children, are receiving shelter and support through our various services.” She went on to express her gratitude to the UNCCD, “ This donation means a lot to us in these times and helps alleviate the deficits caused by the pandemic. Despite the current situation, we will do our best to make Christmas a beautiful one for all those we care for and especially for the children.”
(Orig. text: Carol Kloeppel)