The International Humanitarian Assistance, designed and carried out by the White Helmets Commission of the Argentine Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has become a state policy and constitutes a fundamental tool for the Argentine Foreign Policy, which is guided by the principle of non indifference among States.
After 22 years of work promoting respect to International Law, Human Rights and Humanitarian International Law, the Commission develops its activities through a working model based on cooperation, solidarity and community participation.
This Argentine Initiative sets into motion when called upon by the affected country or in the framework of an International humanitarian appeal, under the principles of impartiality, neutrality, independence and humanitarism. It is entirely integrated with civilian personnel and backed by a team of national and international volunteers.
Since its inception in 1994, White Helmets has carried out more than 260 humanitarian assistance missions in all five continents. It has a links network of international bilateral and multilateral cooperation through which it coordinates the immediate response to socio-natural disasters; it takes part in the restoration, reconstruction and development tasks, and promotes risks prevention and management.
The White Helmets Initiative was endorsed by the United Nations 48° General Assembly and this acknowledgement has been renewed every three years, highlighting the importance of Argentine experience in humanitarian crisis management through the organization of the volunteering corps. The most recent support was given at the UN 70° General Assembly, on December 10th, 2015.
At the regional level, since 1995, the General Assembly of the Organization of American States (OAS) has been adopting the White Helmets Initiative contributing to its consolidation. They became strategic partners, as the OAS adopted resolutions that led to a system of support for the activities of the White Helmets in the Americas, including a White Helmets Special Fund. The OAS continues to ratify this Initiative on a yearly basis.
In Argentina, the White Helmets co-coordinates the National Platform on Disasters Risk Reduction in accordance with the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction guidelines (ISDR/EIRD), a United Nations office in charge of the monitoring of the Sendai Framework, approved in 2015 at the III World Conference for the Reduction of Disasters, and which will serve as a guide until 2030.
For further information on The White Helmets Commission see: www.cascosblancos.gob.ar