Humanitarian crises leave millions around the world deprived of the base we all need to feel protected and comfortable, to be ourselves – to feel home.
"On Solid Ground" is a campaign jointly run by the European Commission's Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO), International Rescue Committee (IRC) and Panos Pictures raising awareness the work ECHO and the IRC do in helping refugees around the world.
Using the concept of home, On Solid Ground allows audiences across Europe to connect with the issues faced by people hit by some of the most devastating humanitarian crises around the world through a captivating series of photographs.
Seven photographers travelled to Mali, Kenya, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Jordan, Pakistan and Croatia, to visit ECHO/IRC projects and document for On Solid Ground the lives of refugees, the displaced and those coping with disaster.
The campaign has been officially launched on World Refugee Day, 20 June 2013 in London with Kristalina Georgieva, European Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response.
After the launch in London the exhibition has been displayed (near Trafalgar Square), in the courtyard of St Martin in the Fields until 31 July. In September it has been exhibited in front of the Palais des Congres in Perpignan, France during the International Photojournalism Festival - Visa pour l’Image. After France the exhibition has moved to Austria, Vienna and in October to Germany, Munich as a part of the annual FOTODOKS photo festival. In November the exhibition moved to Zagreb. The final stop is Brussels where the exhibition will be set up at Place d'Albertine and will be displayed from 2 to 20 December. It will be also advertised in the Brussels metro stations.
The European Commission and IRC have worked closely together to meet the urgent needs of refugees around the world.
Since its inception in 1933, the IRC has been a global leader in rapid response and durable solutions for conflict and crisis-affected populations. Working in over 40 countries around the world, the IRC has been a longstanding partner of ECHO providing support to millions of people.
Since 2004, ECHO has contributed over €120 million to support IRC UK projects in over 20 countries around the world with a particular focus on Afghanistan, Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Liberia, Pakistan and Somalia.
The European Commission will continue to work with the IRC and its other partners to ensure that refugees are not left on their own and get the support they need to start a new life on solid ground.