Saturday, November 14, 2020 – World Vision Australia has warmly welcomed the Government’s continued engagement with south-east Asia and the Pacific.
“The support and leadership Australia has provided through the COVID-19 pandemic has been of historic proportions and demonstrates the type of friendship our neighbours and family have come to know and expect from Australia,” World Vision Australia acting CEO Graham Strong said. “We have been asking for Australia to dig deeper, just as it did after the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami, said Mr Strong.
“John Howard said at the time it was ‘a human tragedy on a scale that none of us in our lifetime have seen, and it does require a response above the ordinary’. COVID-19 marks a new era in human tragedy – once again ‘a response above the ordinary’ is urgently needed to sustain a stable, inclusive and prosperous region,” Mr Strong said.
“The Prime Minister and ministers Payne and Hawke have answered our call for a ‘response above the ordinary’ and, in doing so, have reaffirmed Australia’s partnership with the region. This goes a long way to strengthening and deepening links with our south-east Asian neighbours and Pacific family,” Mr Strong said.
World Vision Australia has been working quietly but effectively with the Government to guide and support Australia’s policy response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We have a common interest in ensuring our development and COVID response has the strongest impact, Mr Strong said.
“World Vision has been partnering with communities in the region for 45 years and understands that these commitments are what sets us apart as a partner of choice for our Pacific and Southeast Asian neighbours.
“World Vision is looking forward to continuing our partnership with the Australian government, and we are exploring ways in which our significant footprint – particularly across the Pacific and Timor Leste – can support the Australian government and other countries in the safe and effective distribution of a COVID-19 vaccine when available,” Mr Strong said. “We have a long way to travel together as a region, but these historic and extraordinary commitments demonstrate Australia’s willingness to walk as a family.”