The work of the UN is global, touching the lives of billions of people. The work of the Organization is, however, mostly done locally, within regions and countries. In order to accomplish this, the UN and the many entities comprising the “UN system” have created a presence in every region of the world, so the people most in need of help can be reached quickly. The UN’s work is divided into five geographical regions: Africa, Americas, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, and the Middle East. Here is an overview of each area, with links to relevant offices, agencies and programmes:
UN Photo/Tobin Jones
A school girl during a class break in 2013 at the school run by the Hawa Abdi Centre in the Afgooye Corridor, Somalia, which has for decades helped tens of thousands of Somalis displaced by civil war.
The two main centres of UN activity in Africa are Nairobi, Kenya and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. There are also, in Africa, many regional and country offices of UN system entities, UN political offices, and nine UN peacekeeping missions.
UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe
View of the Gray Lake Glacier in Torres del Paine, Chile. where Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visited in 2007 to see first hand the effects of the climate change on melting glaciers.
The centre of UN activity in North America is New York City, USA, host of the United Nations Headquarters. The centre of UN activity in South America is Santiago, Chile, home to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean.
UN Photo/Ali Mustofa
Early in the morning, when farmers go to paddy fields, in Maos village, central Java, Indonesia.
Asia and the Pacific
The main centre of United Nations activity in Asia and the Pacific is Bangkok, Thailand, home to the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific. There are also many regional and country offices of UN system entities, and UN political offices in the Asia and Pacific region.
UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré
An aerial view of the United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG), Switzerland.
Europe and Central Asia
The main centres of United Nations activity in Europe and Central Asia are Geneva, Switzerland, Vienna, Austria and The Hague in the Netherlands. Geneva is home to the UN Office at Geneva (UNOG) and the Economic Commission for Europe (ECE). Vienna is home to the UN Office in Vienna (UNOV). The Hague is the seat of the International Court of Justice. There are also many regional and country offices of UN system entities, and UN political offices in Europe and Central Asia.
UN Photo/Mark Garten
A woman and child at Za’atri refugee camp in 2012, host to tens of thousands of Syrians displaced by conflict, near Mafraq, Jordan. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visited the camp in 2012 as part of a two-leg trip to Jordan and Turkey to assess the Syrian refugee situation in those countries.
The centre of UN activity in the Middle East is Beirut, Lebanon, home to the Economic and Social Commision for Western Asia. In addition to ESCWA, there are also UN political offices in the Middle East, and many regional and country offices of UN system entities in the Middle East and North Africa region.
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