The first response to human suffering must be solidarity

Published on Friday 25 May 2018

Alexandre Giraud


At a time when hatred is being poured as violently and as openly onto social networks, even solidarity and humanitarian action are not spared. Because it bears the name of an action that is increasingly being challenged, SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL wishes to recall its mandate, its mission, its commitment, its principles, its human values and its action without borders. With the help of a raw & shock campaign.


For nearly 40 years now, the teams of the humanitarian association SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL have been fighting to access and support the people whose health and lives are threatened by wars, natural disasters and epidemics.

A dignified and vital aid, provided every year in person to more than 4 million of the most fragile people, without any other consideration than  their needs, without discrimination and with complete independence, impartiality and neutrality.

This humanitarian mandate is the fruit of the unwavering commitment of several generations of men and women determined to cross borders with humanity and solidarity as their only concerns.

DRC, South Sudan, Mali, Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan, Myanmar, Haiti… In 2018, the NGO SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL is present in 18 countries in crisis. These are all sensitive areas where our 2,000 humanitarian workers work, with their commitment and expertise, with the men, women and children who suffer, often off the radar, away from the media and people’s concerns.


And yet… However noble it may be, the humanitarian imperative to which we are responding has been more and more violently called into question in recent years.

It is no longer just a question of governments or armed groups responding to an agenda of their own… but of a part of public opinion – minimal, but very visible – which expresses itself very openly on social networks, pouring its hatred for others, its disgust for actions of solidarity, and therefore of international solidarity. Non content with conspiracy, communalism or racism, they delve into a growing and dangerous dehumanisation of people in a situation of suffering.


Terrorism, economic, political, social, migratory crises, misunderstanding and even growing mistrust of NGOs and questioning their effectiveness… Whatever the factors that might explain this social phenomenon – we will let those whose expertise it is to shed light on it – SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL no longer wished to ignore insults and invectives, simply recalling its mandate, which can be summed up by a motto that has also been its motto since its creation in 1980: “The first response to human suffering must be solidarity”.

This motto is shared by the tens of thousands of people who support us every year. Many more of them send us messages of support, always filled with the same humanity that drives our action. Let us use these lines to thank those who support us and identify themselves in our mandate.

Respond Solidarity

© Vincent Tremeau & Gwenn Dubourthoumieu / SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL