News in Brief 14 June 2017 (AM)

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Bundles of Somali shilling notes are seen at a money exchanger's stall on the streets of the capital Mogadishu. Millions of people in the Horn of Africa nation rely on money sent from their relatives and friends abroad in the form of remittances in order to survive. Photo: AU/UN IST/Stuart Price

Migrants "lifting millions out of poverty" by sending money home

The amount of money migrants send to their families in developing countries has risen by 51 per cent over the past decade, according to a new report released by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) on Wednesday.

The study covers a 10-year period of migration and remittance flows, between 2007 and 2016.

A remittance is the funds a foreign worker sends to his or her country of origin.

The report shows that there have been increases in almost all regions of the world.

However, the sharp rise over the past decade is in large part due to Asia which has witnessed an 87 per cent increase in remittances.

More than 200 million migrant workers are now supporting an estimated 800 million family members globally.

The small amounts of $200 and $300 that each migrant sends home make an enormous difference in the lives of their families and their communities, IFAD President, Gilbert F. Houngbo, said  on Wednesday.

The report is being released ahead of the International Day of Family Remittances commemorated annually on 16 June.

Give "valuable gift of blood" in emergency situations, UN urges

People around the world are being asked by the UN health agency, WHO, to donate blood regularly so that blood stocks are sufficient before emergencies arise.

The campaign is being launched on World Blood Donor Day, celebrated every year on 14 June to raise awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products.

It's also a day set aside to thank donors for their life-saving gift.

In the last decade, disasters have caused more than 1 million deaths, with more than 250 million people being affected by emergencies every year, says WHO.

Natural disasters such as earthquakes and man-made disasters such as road accidents and armed conflicts create considerable needs for emergency health care and front-line treatment.

Blood is an important resource, the agency recalls, both for planned treatments and urgent interventions.

Elder abuse on the rise, UN health agency warns

The World Health Organisation (WHO) is also raising the alarm about the rise of elder abuse around the world.

A new study backed by WHO and published in the Lancet Global health found that around 1 in 6 older people experience some form of abuse.

The figure is previously higher than estimated and it's expected to rise as populations age worldwide, the agency says.

People aged 60 years and older are often subjected to psychological, financial, physical and in some cases, sexual abuse.

The research draws on the best available evidence from 52 studies in 28 countries from different regions, including 12 low- and middle-income countries.

According to Alana Officer, Senior Health Adviser, Department of Ageing and Life Course at WHO, more must be done to prevent and respond to the increasing frequency of different forms of abuse.

By 2050 the number of people aged 60 and over, will double to reach 2 billion globally, with the vast majority of elderly people living in low- and middle-income countries.

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.

Duration: 2’58″

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