By Betina Gollander-Jensen 6 Jan 2021 | Mission East

New Year's greetings from Mission East

2020 was a challenging year on many fronts. But challenges are not only bad, they can also hold good opportunities if we pause and learn from the things that were difficult.

Mission East is primarily known for being present with relief and development assistance in areas that are the most difficult to reach and characterized by fragility and conflict. This is how our beneficiaries, donors and supporters know us, and this is how we will continue to work. At the same time, 2020, with its special challenges, has shown that Mission East has the right size to be prepared for change and act quickly, so that aid effectively reaches the poorest and most vulnerable.

Therefore, I now begin the year with great confidence in Mission East's work in 2021 and beyond.

Strengthened cooperation and solidarity

One of the things we learned to appreciate in 2020, when Covid-19 influenced many activities, was the cooperation and solidarity with our beneficiaries and our local partners. A virus like Covid-19 does not distinguish between nationality or religion. The Covid-19 infection affects all of humanity and demands that we think new and work together to ensure that we tirelessly continue to provide support and help despite restrictions and shutdowns. Mission East will therefore in 2021 put the collaboration with various actors and the strengthening of our local partners at the forefront, so that challenges can be tackled together, whether these challenges are called Covid-19, water shortages or food insecurity.

Anticipatory action provides resilience

The year 2020 has not made it easier to be poor around the world. Unfortunately, we must even face the fact that many, especially women and girls, during the Corona shutdowns, have had their rights violated to an even greater extent than before. Poverty has deepened in many areas. Therefore, in 2021, Mission East will put extra effort to ensure anticipatory action in the countries where we work, so that the people we help have the right systems in place to become more resilient to poverty, conflict and distress.

Green initiatives

Just as Corona strikes humanity, the state of the earth strikes us all. Many of the people we help are particularly vulnerable because they live in areas where climate change and environmental impacts are already making it difficult to maintain living conditions. Often this creates fertile ground for conflict.

In 2021, Mission East will give extra focus on initiatives, that helps our program countries to implement green, sustainable initiatives that ensure that beneficiaries can feed themselves and their families and not be forced to move because, for example, their land is no longer fruitful, or because competition over the good soil creates conflicts.

Mission East is known for being an organization that is present where there is conflict and difficult conditions for people. We will continue to be in these hotspots and use our extensive experience and good collaborations to deliver emergency aid and development where the needs are greatest.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all Mission East’s donors and supporters who follow our work with interest. I hope to have the opportunity to meet many of you during 2021.

Happy new year to all!

Betina Gollander-Jensen
Managing Director (Secretary General)