Brussels, 29 May 2015 – Public support for the European Union’s humanitarian aid has gone up in spite of the economic crisis. Nine out of 10 citizens (90%) believe it is important for the EU to continue funding humanitarian aid, a rise of two percentage points since the previous survey in 2012. Almost as many, 85%, support humanitarian aid funding in spite of the economic crisis in Europe. These are some of the key findings of the latest Eurobarometer survey on humanitarian aid carried out in the 28 EU Member States between March 21 and 30, 2015. Some 28 082 respondents were interviewed face-to-face about their perceptions of the European Commission’s humanitarian aid.
“The solidarity of Europeans gives hope to hundreds of millions of people around the world who need aid for their very survival amidst conflicts, displacement or natural disasters. I am proud of the strong support of our citizens for Europe’s humanitarian work: it drives our Union to keep being a force for good in this increasingly complex world,” said Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management.
EU citizens show increasing awareness about the EU’s humanitarian aid activities. According to the poll, 76% of them have general knowledge of the EU’s work in this area (compared to 68% in 2012). There is also strong awareness about the EU’s specific actions in response to big crises, such as the Ebola epidemic in West Africa.
Europeans chose the internet as their preferred sources of information on humanitarian aid, followed by television and the press. A large majority of respondents (84%) also supports EU Aid Volunteers, an initiative of sending volunteers to conduct humanitarian aid worldwide. The first EU Aid Volunteers have already been deployed for more than a year now in a series of pilot projects.
The EU as a whole — the European Commission together with the Member States — is the world’s largest humanitarian aid donor. The European Commission provides life-saving assistance around the world. This assistance is carried out in partnership with UN agencies, NGOs and international organisations such as the Red Cross.
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06/06/2015 JOURNAL OF RISK AND CRISIS COMMUNICATION