Humanitarian Exchange articles tagged:Standards

Most humanitarian donors recognise the core humanitarian principles of humanity, impartiality, independence and neutrality as a foundation for action in situations of conflict and complex emergency. They are enshrined in the ‘European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid’ adopted by European Union (EU) donors in December 2007 and are a key component of the Good Humanitarian Donorship (GHD) principles, first signed by donors in 2003. In practice, however, donors are confronted with numerous challenges to the application of humanitarian principles. There is growing political pressure to portray humanitarian action as part of the crisis management toolbox, or to link it to counter-insurgency,…
Most international NGOs (INGOs) delivering humanitarian assistance in disrupted societies have yet to design and implement concrete programmes that encourage substantive partnerships with local organisations, despite a broad and sincere effort to make such cooperation a centrepiece of relief and development. Enduring collaboration and capacity building depend on INGOs taking initiative and spending money on partnerships in politically charged environments, advocacy with donors and host governments, and serious institutional investment in local organisations. A Princeton University graduate research team visited five countries (Bosnia, Mozambique, Pakistan, Palestine, and Sudan) and interviewed more than 100 local and INGOs in November 1999 to assess the cooperative ventures between the two in politically disrupted environments. The study focused on four…
Over the past two years, there has been persistent and increasing opposition to the Sphere and Ombudsman projects, and by extension to field-based or general codes of conduct, including the People-in-Aid code. This opposition has come primarily from French NGOs associated with the Groupe Urgence- Réhabilitation-Développement (Groupe URD). The initial objection to Sphere – that ‘to every complex problem there is a simple solution, and it is a bad one’ – has led to an advice to the French government not to co-fund the Ombudsman project; and has resulted in the creation of a ‘Platform for Quality’ and consideration of…
Jennifer F. Klot directed Graça Machel’s secretariat for the UN Study on the Impact of Armed Conflict on Children. She has worked with international nongovernmental organisations, private foundations and multilateral agencies in the area of human rights, youth development, women’s rights, and development planning in both the United States and in Africa. “The report on the Impact of Armed Conflict on Children is testimony to the millions of children who have been killed, injured and permanently disabled as a result of armed conflicts. It is testimony to countless others who have been forced to witness and take part in horrifying…
How do humanitarian responders and the organisations they work for take conflict into account when responding to rapid-onset emergencies? In what ways do the actions of humanitarian agencies exacerbate conflict? These were some of the questions a group of NGOs working together in the Conflict Sensitivity Consortium[1] (CSC) set about answering in a commissioned report published by HPN in October 2011.[2] The research looked at the organisational frameworks and emergency manuals used by international NGOs, system-wide tools and standards such as the Sphere Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in humanitarian response and the HAP 2007 Standard in Humanitarian Accountability and…
Identifying the most appropriate response from the wide range of available options requires a response analysis. The growing use of cash transfer programming in emergencies has made us more conscious of how important this step is, primarily as a result of the broader analysis necessary to ensure that markets can be used to support humanitarian response. Use of cash transfers as a response option has shifted programming logic from a focus on the distribution of outputs to defining the objectives of a programme in relation to needs and intended outcomes at the beneficiary level. The tools developed to guide modality…
Tucked away in the arid North Eastern Province of Kenya is one of the largest and oldest refugee camp complexes in the world. Twenty-one years old, with a population of over 300,000, the Dadaab refugee camps (Ifo, Hagedera and Dagahaley) host refugees mainly from Somalia, but also from Burundi, Ethiopia, Rwanda and Sudan. Humanitarian agencies are under pressure not only to provide services to resident refugees, many of whom have lived in the camp complex for over 20 years, but also to address the needs of the approximately 1,000 refugees who continue to arrive from Somalia every month. They face…
The use of businesses connected to armed groups and trafficking networks to transport humanitarian aid is a problem long privately acknowledged by aid workers in complex political emergencies and disaster relief operations. Until recently, it was largely seen as one of the inevitable compromises that have to be made in order to get aid through in high-risk conflict and disaster zones where few reputable commercial companies are prepared to venture. However, new draft procurement guidelines[1] published by the Humanitarian Aid department of the European Commission (ECHO) call for greater due diligence in contracting transport services. The ECHO guidelines focus particular…
The role of the military in civilian affairs is viewed with suspicion by civil society in Pakistan as elsewhere. The country has experienced a number of humanitarian crises in recent years, both natural and man-made. The devastating earthquake of 2005 and the terrible flooding of the last few months are two of the most recent large-scale examples. Low administrative capacity and complex political structures and relationships have made it difficult for the Pakistani government to respond without the support of the military, and the armed forces have played a range of sometimes controversial roles. The Pakistani military played a vital…
Post Disaster Needs Assessments (PDNAs) are meant to ensure that both the needs and the opinions of everyone affected by and responding to a disaster are taken into account. It is widely accepted that those directly affected should be heard, and many agencies have developed strategies and tools to allow this. But it is rare that children and young people – who often comprise more than half of an affected population – are consulted. Guidelines for conducting PDNAs do not recognise the value of young people’s views. This article shows that children and young people can offer very valuable perspectives,…
Page 1 of 10

Find an Issue

Standard Login