The European Union as a whole is the world’s biggest donors of humanitarian aid, contributing more than half of official global humanitarian aid.
The Commission’s European Community Humanitarian Office (ECHO) was created in 1992 as an expression of the European solidarity. In 2004 ECHO became the Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid before integrating Civil Protection in 2010 for a better coordination and disaster response inside and outside Europe.
The Office is dealing with two topics:
The European civil protection covers three phases of the disaster management cycle: Prevention, Preparedness & Response:
The Civil Protection Financial Instrument was set up in 2007 and aims at supporting and complementing the efforts of Member States for the protection, primarily of people, but also of the environment and property, including cultural heritage, in the event of natural and man-made disasters, acts of terrorism and technological, radiological or environmental accidents.