The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) recently launched its new website, OCHA Online (ochaonline.un.org), with an expanded content and revamped design. “The coordination of response to humanitarian crises has emerged as one of the most important functions of the United Nations," said Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Jan Egeland. “OCHA is uniquely placed at the centre of this coordination through its mandate, and this new website provides an insight to OCHA’s functions and activities."
The new OCHA Online features tools and services provided by OCHA that are critical for carrying out humanitarian operations. The site also includes in-depth coverage of issues of concern to the humanitarian community, such as the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the plight of internally displaced persons and the humanitarian impact of sanctions.
A virtual news centre makes it simple to obtain press releases and the latest situation reports on natural disasters and complex emergencies, as well as the text of statements made by OCHA senior managers. Publications, including newsletters and other documentation produced by OCHA, are also featured on the news centre.
In order to carry out its functions in the field, OCHA has established a number of field and regional offices. An interactive map of OCHA’s presence around the world provides links to the sites of these offices. Egeland hopes the new OCHA Online will promote greater awareness of humanitarian issues and concerns, particularly in the coordination of response to emergencies, policy development and advocacy.