ITU Blog: Humanitarian aid is as close as your phone
There are more than 60 million people in the world today who have been forced to flee their homes due to violence and armed conflict. Images of refugees arriving on the shores of Europe have become a grim reality of our 24-hour news cycle.
But instead of reaching out for food or medical attention, they get their mobile phones and wave them toward the sky, desperately searching for a wireless signal.
We shouldn’t have been shocked. While it’s certainly true that ‘you can’t eat a phone’, mobile connectivity is rapidly becoming both an essential tool of personal empowerment and a catalyst for sustainable global development. In fact, the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, agreed to by all 193 member states of the United Nations, recognised that “global connectivity and information and communication technologies (ICTs) hold great potential for human progress”.