emergency fund

Central Emergency Response Fund

The Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) is a humanitarian funding mechanism established by the United Nations to enable more timely and reliable assistance to victims of natural disasters and armed conflicts. It was approved by the United Nations General Assembly on 15 December 2005 and launched in March 2006.

Following a disaster, the world looks to the UN to lead the international response. The UN relies on donor contributions to undertake relief activities. Contributions, however, can often be unreliable, uneven and late. Early and predictable funding is essential. It prevents situations from spiraling out of control, saving resources and, more importantly, saving lives.

The CERF was created to ensure that funds are available immediately in response to disasters and emergencies. The Fund provides an easy and centralized way to support the UN’s life-saving efforts in humanitarian crises around the world. Whether in response to a headline disaster or a forgotten crisis, the CERF permits the UN to respond rapidly and equitably to save lives.


Since its inception in March 2006, the Fund has provided over US$800 million in assistance, reaching millions of disaster victims in over 60 countries. Recent contributions have helped survivors of the May 2008 earthquake in China and cyclone in Myanmar, as well as victims of the ongoing conflict in Darfur.

Specific allocations from the Fund included:

Donor contributions

The CERF is funded by contributions from governments, private businesses, foundations and individuals. The Fund has received over US$1.1 billion in contributions since it began in March 2006. Click here for the latest list of donors.

See also

External links


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