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The Humanitarian System: Roles, Responsibilities and Coordination

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1 The Humanitarian System: Roles, Responsibilities and Coordination
This session is one hour, including a 10 minutes presentation from the Country level Cluster Coordinator. This presentation takes approximately 45 minutes Module 02

2 Learning Objectives Have a basic knowledge of the international Humanitarian System Understand the diversity of actors involved in humanitarian action and be able to identify common principles upheld by all. Understand the purpose and importance of coordination Be aware of the main humanitarian coordination bodies and mechanisms. List key sources of resource mobilization for humanitarian response

3 ‘Humanitarian System’ – Network of Actors
This figure: Shows a number of diverse actors involved in international and national humanitarian efforts – affected population, government, UN agencies, NGOs, donors, etc Provides useful reminder of the role played by various actors Underscores the need for strong coordination

4 Disaster Management Actors at the country level
Host Government Bi-lateral donors At the country level, in a given emergency situation, humanitarian workers deal with these actors: there is of course, the government of the affected country who is primarily responsible for managing the disaster within its boundaries and all other actors working in support of that government. UN system and other Agencies Target population NGOs, Red Cross & other civil society members A U S T R A L I A

5 Findings from the 2005 Humanitarian Response Review
WHY REFORM? Findings from the 2005 Humanitarian Response Review Well-known, long-standing gaps Limited & inconsistent linkages: UN & non-UN Coordination erratic/personality driven Insufficient accountability (particularly for IDPs) Inconsistent donor policies Humanitarian reform is about ensuring that humanitarian response is completely congruent to the humanitarian needs. A review of past response experience conducted by IASC revealed that invariably, during response to some of the major emergencies in the past the humanitarian actors are confronted with well-known gaps repeatedly. “ this makes for an incomplete response, gaps in aid to beneficiaries.” It is evident that no single actor or group of actors can work in isolation. on the side of the UN, coordination efforts are too contingent on what our mothers taught us, the need to upgrade and ensure better quality across the board in coordinating, facilitating, in leading meetings and assessments. Insufficient accountability for the victims of a disaster has been a chronic issue in response to major emergencies, particularly with reference to IDPs whose needs often remain unnoticed, un-assessed and therefore not addressed. Without organized information at hand regarding the impact and its spread, we have seen that it is rather difficult for humanitarian actors to decipher what will win donors’ support and what will not.

6 Humanitarian Reform Strengthening existing humanitarian response through greater: Accountability Predictability Leadership Partnership

7 Roles, Responsibilities and Coordination: The 3 Pillars of Reform
1 2 3 HUMANITARIAN COORDINATION Effective leadership and coordination in humanitarian emergencies HUMANITARIAN FINANCING Adequate, timely and flexible financing CLUSTER APPROACH Adequate capacity and predictable leadership in all sectors PARTNERSHIP Strong partnerships between UN and non-UN actors

8 Partnership is the Foundation for Reform
Partnership amongst UN and non-UN partners including government, the civil society organizations, NGOs, CBOs and international organizations Respect for each other’s mandates Recognition of agency-based approaches Collaborative and inclusive process: aims to avoid excessive and unfocused meetings builds on the complementarity amongst actors

9 Global Humanitarian Platform
NGOs are major actors in humanitarian assistance NGO resources and expertise are often greater – and may differ from – those of UN agencies Weaknesses with IASC … UN-centric, felt as out of touch with or even irrelevant to the realities on the ground 2005 External Review of the IASC recommended the creation of an outreach mechanism -> Global Humanitarian Platform GHP is unique due to: Spirit of equality and informality Equal status of all three pillars Participation of national NGOs

10 GHP Objectives Achieve a common understanding on the concept of partnership by developing "Principles of Partnership". Partners to ensure principles permeate their operations and actions Implement Principles of Partnership at country level. Dialogue on strategic issues of common concern: accountability to the populations for, and with, whom we work strengthening of the capacity of local actors the safety and security of the staff roles in situations of transition Meet annually to take stock of the progress to date and make adjustments, where appropriate

11 Roles, Responsibilities and Coordination: The 3 Pillars of Reform
1 2 3 HUMANITARIAN COORDINATION Effective leadership and coordination in humanitarian emergencies HUMANITARIAN FINANCING Adequate, timely and flexible financing CLUSTER APPROACH Adequate capacity and predictable leadership in all sectors PARTNERSHIP Strong partnerships between UN and non-UN actors

12 Pillar I: Humanitarian Coordination – United Nations
At the top is the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator (ERC) responsible for oversight of all emergencies requiring UN humanitarian assistance acts as the central focal point for Governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental relief activities ERC is the Head of OCHA OCHA coordinates the UN’s response to complex emergencies and natural disasters supports the Humanitarian Coordinator (HC) at country level in needs assessments, contingency planning and the formulation of humanitarian programmes OCHA also provides response tools, and advocacy and information services .

13 Humanitarian Coordination – The IASC
Chaired by the ERC, the Inter Agency Standing Committee (IASC) is an inter-agency forum established in 1992 responsible for: coordination policy development and decision-making IASC comprises the main UN agencies, the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and the INGO’s The IASC focuses on generic policy issues, whilst the IASC Clusters have specific technical areas of policy and operational concern

14 Coordination: Roles and Responsibilities
UN has designated Humanitarian Coordinators (HC) in 29 countries, managed by OCHA, and are responsible for leading and coordinating the humanitarian action of relevant organisations in-country In the rest of the countries, this function is assumed by the UN Resident Coordinator (RC) who is also the Representative of UNDP . The HC/RC ensure the following: Coordination and inclusion of the various humanitarian actors Coordination and development of a common strategic vision Articulation of a common strategic plan for realizing this vision (e.g. CHAP ― Common Humanitarian Action Plan) Efficient and effective division of labour among organizations (through clusters)

15 Coordination: Roles and Responsibilities – HC/RC (2)
Timely, effective and efficient implementation of strategic plan by holding cluster leads accountable By establishing inter-cluster coordination, needs assessment, monitoring and evaluation Ensuring the strategic plan is funded All necessary efforts are made to obtain free, timely and unimpeded access to populations in need International humanitarian and human rights laws are promoted and respected

16 Coordination: Roles and Responsibilities
Humanitarian coordination is a very demanding function as time is of critical concern. Is influenced by: nature and impact of the crisis stakeholders’ capacities political commitment of national and international players National Government or occupying power has primary responsibility for the provision (and coordination) of response to the territory affected by disaster Humanitarian agencies have an essential role to play by supporting the government and respecting their coordination function Exceptions are when the authorities are themselves responsible for abuse and violations, or when their assistance is not impartial

17 Coordination: Roles and Responsibilities
National governments may be able to mount their own relief operations to help their people depending on national capacity and scale of the crisis The capacity of a national government to coordinate and respond to a crisis is determined by the existence of: Clear, pre-determined, lines of authority and responsibility Knowledge and aptitude within the government to manage its relationship with international agencies Availability of reliable information systems The capacity to work constructively with the media Adequate national technical capacity for programmes designed to address emergency nutrition problems

18 Coordination: Roles and Responsibilities
Inter-Agency Coordination Groups can fill the coordination vacuum by coming together and working under a common framework in situations where there is no recognised government or authority Some of these coordination groups have been complemented by the IASC cluster fora to add impetus to emergency focus as seen in Somalia NB: This does not occur very often

19 Collaborative Groupings within the Humanitarian System - Donors
The Good Humanitarian Donorship (GHD) initiative comprises representatives of government, donors and the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid Office (ECHO) It endorses the principles and good practice of humanitarian donorship By defining principles and standards, it provides a framework to guide official humanitarian aid and a mechanism for encouraging greater donor accountability

20 International Red Cross/Red Crescent Movement: Federation, Committee, National Societies
International Federation Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies carries out relief operations together with the (global) network of national societies: Promoting humanitarian values Disaster response (food, food security, nutrition…) Disaster preparedness (pre-positioning of stocks) Health and community care 27-Mar-17

21 International Committee of the Red Cross mandated:
International Red Cross/Red Crescent Movement: Federation, Committee, National Societies International Committee of the Red Cross mandated: to be the guardian and promoter of international humanitarian law to protect the lives and dignity of victims of armed conflict and other situations of violence to provide them with assistance (health, protection, detention, tracing, etc). Geneva Conventions Specific ICRC Statutes used in contexts where Geneva Conventions do not apply 27-Mar-17

22 National Societies Unique network of 187 member national societies which cover almost every country in the world Act as auxillaries to the public authorities of their own countries in the humanitarian field and provide a range of services Their local knowledge and experise, access to communities and infrastructure enable the Movement to reach areas and peoples in need During wartime, National Societies assist the affected civilian population 27-Mar-17

23 What they do have in common is a commitment to the seven Red Cross and Red Crescent fundamental principles – humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality 27-Mar-17

24 International NGOs NGOs can be distinguished by area of speciality
(nutrition assessments, selective feeding, general food rations, livelihood support, advocacy); by the way they work (whether they are operational or work through local partners); by relationship and dependence on donors (whether mainly dependent on donors that provide only food assistance or not). Sources and mechanisms of funding vary enormously. Some largely dependent upon government, while others have developed mechanisms to access large amounts of private and public funding (→ greater autonomy in strategic direction and geographic locations) 27-Mar-17

25 Local NGOs Including church-based groups
Often have a great connectedness to local populations and their needs Are easily accepted by the community Have a great deal of understanding of local context and the dynamics of the population, its characteristics and socio-political environment May have experience in diverse emergency situations Are usually present before an emergency strikes and remain once the crisis is over Tend to work at lower levels than international NGOs Fill gaps that international NGOs may miss In general NGOs are responsible for most nutritional surveys conducted during emergencies 27-Mar-17

26 Pillar II: Funding Mechanisms for Humanitarian Response

27 Initiatives to Strengthen Humanitarian Financing
Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) Emergency Response Funds (ERFs) Pooled Funding Good Humanitarian Donorship initiative (GHD) CERF is an integral part of the Humanitarian Reform as it contributes to: (i) more timely and predictable humanitarian financing to ensure and enable a prompt response to new or rapidly deteriorating crises by providing stand-by funds, (ii) reinforces the leadership role of the HC/RC, (iii) reinforces cluster approach (project vetting/prioritization). General Assembly Resolution A/RES/60/124 upgraded the CERF to $500 million, creating a $450 million grant component as a stand-by fund (while still maintaining $50 million loan facility). Goal is to ensure a predictable and timely response to humanitarian emergencies, based on demonstrable needs and on priorities identified in consultation with the humanitarian Country Team Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) The Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) is a stand-by fund established by the United Nations to enable more timely and reliable humanitarian assistance to victims of natural disasters and armed conflicts.   Emergency Response Funds (ERFs) In some countries Emergency Response Funds are used as mechanism for NGOs and UN agencies to cover unforeseen humanitarian needs, and have been used since 1997.  An ERF is often established and administered by the Humanitarian Coordinators (HC) office with an advisory board made up of UN Agencies and in some cases NGOs (for example in Somalia and Ethiopia). For more information please click here. Pooled Funding The objective of Pool Funding a multi-donor initiative is to support the timely allocation and disbursement of donor resources to the most critical humanitarian needs under the overall management of the Humanitarian Coordinator. Pooled funds are similar to ERFs, often established to ensure flexibility and adequate funding using needs based approach aiming for flexible, timely, predictable and adequate funding for areas within the agreed Humanitarian Action Plan. For more information please click here. Good Humanitarian Donorship The Good Humanitarian Donorship (GHD) initiative provides a forum for donors to discuss good practice in funding humanitarian assistance and other shared concerns. By defining principles and standards it provides both a framework to guide official humanitarian aid and a mechanism for encouraging greater donor accountability. For more information click here.

28 CERF doesn’t replace appeals; it interacts with them
up to 6 months 6 months on Flash Appeal – Multiple donors Consolidated Appeals Process (CAP) Nutrition Cluster SOP plus projects CERF Project proposals The CERF and the CAP are complementary. The CERF does not compete with the CAP, and vice versa. CERF funds mostly go to projects in the coordinated framework of CAPs in the least-funded crises, and to sudden-onset crises under flash appeals. However the CERF cannot fully take the place of direct donor funding for major crises. CERF resources, even if they attain the General Assembly’s target of a steady balance of $450 million, will still represent less than a tenth of worldwide humanitarian funding ($7.2 billion to date in 2006). Yet CERF’s successful first year of operation shows that if donors attain the target, the humanitarian system will have made a major step towards overcoming one of its key constraints: unpredictable and belated funding. Situations requiring CERF funds should normally also generate a Flash Appeal. The HC allocates available CERF funds to the highest-priority FA projects. CERF provides the initial injection of funds for the most urgent life-saving projects in the Flash Appeal to cover the time lag between issuance of the Appeal and receipt of commitments and funds from donors Ideal: Simultaneously prepare Flash appeal and prioritize projects within it for CERF funding; show CERF allocations in summary financial tables within Flash Appeal document. Which funding appeal should de done first? First: Do a Flash Appeal which clearly articulates humanitarian needs, priority sectors for response, an outline of response plans, and roles and responsibilities. Second: Projects that address life-saving activities from the flash appeal can easily be submitted to the CERF mechanism. All that is required is endorsement from the HC, putting them in the CERF format and the signing of Letters of Understanding between submitting agencies and OCHA. Third: Revision of the Flash Appeal. As better assessment information becomes available the projects within the Flash Appeal can be revised at any time. New projects can be inserted. The Flash Appeal is not a static document but is open and flexible. Fourth: If the emergency continues for more that sixth months a CAP can be considered. Flash Appeal….is - Triggered by HC/ RC, in consultation - Focal Point designated (OCHA support) - Assign Cluster responsibility - Assessments, Objectives, strategy - Flash Appeal as overall strategy and prioritisation tool Used to determine allocation of: CERF In-country pooled funding Bilateral OCHA emergency cash grants Max 100,000, in-country procurement CAP (Consolidated Appeals Process) 12 months appeal for longer-term crises offering more analysis and detail. CHAP (Common Humanitarian Action Plan) same process as the CAPs used in countries where political sensitivities about issuing an appeal used in countries where there are political sensitivities about issuing an appeal. (Ex. Sri Lanka)

29 What is CERF? Rapid response grants (2/3 of the $450 million grant facility) – available within 24 hours To Promote early action and response to reduce loss of life To Enhance response to time-critical requirements To Strengthen core elements of humanitarian response in underfunded crisis 29 grants were allocated Jan-Sept to support rapid response to new crises 2. Under-funded crises (1/3 of grant facility) if no other funding source immediately available, including agencies’ own unearmarked agency funds and earmarked donor grants. 14 such grants were given Jan-Sept 2010 to bolster existing under-funded humanitarian operations 3. Loans ($50 million) funding committed but not yet paid; or commitment very likely Spent within 3 months for life-saving needs (no op costs) Launched in 2006, CERF is managed by OCHA, (but can’t access) and only UN and IOM (International Organisation on Migration) are eligible to apply; NGOs cannot apply directly Officially, CERF has 3 windows… In other words, you only take a loan if you know the funding is coming in to allow you to pay it back – e.g. if it’s committed by the donor (signed funding contract) but not yet paid, or if an agency’s managers think a commitment is extremely likely. It’s a cash flow facility; it’s not funding in the usual sense, plus it’s not new, and therefore not so interesting to us. It is administered by the Emergency Response Coordinator (ERC) in consultation with CLA agencies and HCs.

30 CERF Decision-Making Process
CERF funding decisions begin at the country level Project proposals are submitted and reviewed by the cluster members for approach, consistency and to ensure that identified needs are prioritised Decisions are guided by criteria on what constitutes ‘life-saving’ interventions HC or RC – Country Team CERF Secretariat Consultation with Government. Prioritisation of Needs. Assessment Consultations OCHA Consultations Agency HQ Approved or rejected by ERC Life-saving criteria Funding situation Humanitarian response strategy Country capacity

31 Infrastructure Reconstruction Vulnerability assessments
Life-Saving Maybe, depending on context Not Life- Saving Primary Healthcare De-mining Infrastructure Reconstruction Therapeutic Feeding Livestock Vaccinations IM systems Emergency WatSan General Food Distributions Micro-Credit Shelter/NFI Surveillance systems Preparedness Plans Protection Psycho-social Vulnerability assessments Life-saving sectors: Food, health, protection, security, shelter/NFI, watsan, common services Questionable areas/activities (examples) Common services – cluster approach strengthening Health – surveillance systems, cold chain support, reimbursement of user fees, ambulance purchase, training/prevention Food – General distributions Education – Emergency Education Agiculture – General Vet Services Security – de-mining Not Life-Saving – Does not fulfill CERF criteria Coordination IM Preparedness Prevention Economic Recovery Infrastructure 31

32 Global Nutrition Cluster
UNICEF is the Global Nutrition Cluster Lead Agency Currently more than 30 agencies are part of the Global Nutrition Cluster (GNC) At global level, the GNC focuses on coordination, capacity development, emergency preparedness, assessment, monitoring, surveillance and response triggers and supplies. GNC supports country clusters through: rolling out a capacity development strategy; strengthening and expanding a global roster to improve surge capacity (e.g., rapid response capacity); improving the material resourcing of nutritional emergencies through establishing supply requirements; producing practical tools to improve the consistency and quality of response efforts

33 Pillar III: The Cluster Approach - Aims
To close gaps, increase predictability, and strengthen response capacity, coordination and accountability Better linkages with Government/national authorities More strategic responses Better prioritization of available resources

34 At the Global Level Originally IASC designated lead agencies for 9 clusters in key response areas Global Cluster Leads are accountable to the ERC for: Strengthening system-wide preparedness and technical capacity to respond Ensuring predictable leadership and accountability in designated area of work Establishing broader partnership bases Setting standards and policy Cluster leads at the global level have now been designated by the IASC for nine sectors or areas of activity (A ‘sector’ is a specific area of humanitarian activity; a ‘cluster’ is a group of organisations and other stakeholders working together to address needs in one of these specific areas) which in the past either lacked predictable leadership in situations of humanitarian emergency, or where there was considered to be a need to strengthen leadership and partnership with other humanitarian actors. The Global cluster Leads have agreed to be accountable to the Emergency Relief Coordinator for ensuring system-wide preparedness and technical capacity to respond to humanitarian emergencies and for establishing broader partnership bases. They are also tasked for setting standards and policy. The IASC Country Teams (wider and expanded group including UN agencies, NGOs, INGOs and respective government counterparts) enjoy the flexibility to set up clusters as required by the situation in the country and not copy global set up. Bangladesh, for example has set up 12 clusters.

35 Designated Gap Areas or “Clusters” and Lead Agencies
Technical Water, Sanitation & Hygiene (WASH) UNICEF Nutrition Health WHO Shelter UNHCR (conflict) IFRC (natural disasters) Education UNICEF/SC-UK Agriculture FAO Cross-cutting Camp Management IOM (natural disasters) Protection UNHCR Early Recovery UNDP Common Services Logistics WFP Telecommunications OCHA/WFP/UNICEF

36 Responsibilities of Cluster Leads at the global level
Each Lead Agency works with partners to: Set Standards and policies Documentation and dissemination of ‘best practices’ Develop response capacity Stand-by rosters & surge capacity Emergency preparedness Provide support to organizations working in the field Material stockpiles Provide Operational Support Advocacy and resource mobilization

37 At the Country Level Country-level IASC designates Lead Agencies
Each Cluster Lead facilitates a process that ensures a well-coordinated and effective humanitarian response ‘Provider of last resort’ ensure adequate and appropriate response subject to access, security and funding Ensure agreed priority needs are met fill critical gaps Cluster Leads at the country level are accountable to the HC/RC What is meant by ‘provider of last resort’? The ‘provider of last resort’ concept is critical to the cluster approach, and without it the element of predictability is lost. It represents a commitment of sector leads to do their utmost to ensure an adequate and appropriate response. It is necessarily circumscribed by some basic preconditions that affect any framework for humanitarian action, namely unimpeded access, security, and availability of funding. Where there are critical gaps in humanitarian response, it is the responsibility of sector leads to call on all relevant humanitarian partners to address these. If this fails, then depending on the urgency, the sector lead as ‘provider of last resort’ may need to commit itself to filling the gap. If, however, funds are not forthcoming for these activities, the Cluster Lead cannot be expected to implement these activities, but should continue to work with the Humanitarian Coordinator and donors to mobilize the necessary resources. Likewise, where the efforts of the sector lead, the Humanitarian Country Team as a whole, and the Humanitarian Coordinator as the leader of that team are unsuccessful in gaining access to a particular location, or where security constraints limit the activities of humanitarian actors, the provider of last resort will still be expected to continue advocacy efforts and to explain the constraints to stakeholders. For cross-cutting areas such as Protection, Early Recovery and Camp Coordination, the concept of ‘provider of last resort’ will need to be applied in a differentiated manner. In all cases, however, sector leads are responsible for ensuring that wherever there are significant gaps in the humanitarian response they continue advocacy efforts and explain the constraints to stakeholders.

38 “When?” of the Cluster Approach
Contingency Planning & Preparedness Responses to major new emergencies (sudden on-set) Rolled-out in on-going/protracted emergencies, e.g., Somalia Eventually to be used in all countries with Humanitarian Coordinators “Where?” of the Cluster Approach

39 ‘Working together is an urgent life-and- death issue’
Global Humanitarian Platform – Geneva, July 2007 Partnership = - relationship between groups - mutual cooperation & responsibility - for achievement of specified goal Definition with quotes reinforcing the importance of partnership in today’s world. “Partnership is essential in today’s world; issues are too complex for any one organisation”

40 Key tools available through the GNC
Harmonised Training Package for Nutrition in Emergencies Toolkit for Nutrition in Emergencies Factsheet: WHO Growth Standards in Emergencies Initial Rapid Assessment Tool (developed with Health & WASH Clusters Funded updating of NutVal Software (WFP) Funded development of Guidelines for Selective Feeding: the Management of Malnutrition in Emergencies Promote use of Sphere Minimum Standards and co-funded the revision of the Nutrition and Food Security Chapter Support for MAM : literature review (CDC); development of decision tool (tree); design of product sheet; development of Guidance Note Updating of Cluster Coordinators’ training package Development of Handbook (in progress: targets practitioners within the nutrition cluster and other clusters; addresses 13 functional areas for cluster coordination

41 Coordination Processes, Mechanisms and Tools – Nutrition Cluster
At country level, the nutrition cluster is supported by its coordinator and works with national and international partners to establish and agree a workable coordination mechanism which can act as an information sharing and planning forum. Its main tasks are: Organising joint assessments Promoting emergency preparedness improving coverage of emergency nutrition programmes Feeding into CAP or Flash Appeals Developing agreed plan of action Each country coordinator works in a consultative and cooperative manner with as many agencies and organisations as is appropriate, including the national government.

42 Building a stronger, more predictable humanitarian response system
Partnership underpins all humanitarian action Strengthened sectoral coordination Stronger and more accountable leadership Flexible, adequate and timely funding No longer reform, but the way we do business! Result was Humanitarian Reform Agenda……. Aims to strengthen humanitarian response capacity through building a stronger, more predictable, humanitarian response system, based on accountability and partnership All in support of overall government leadership of the response Cluster approach is an APPROACH (ie, a way of working) – recognised as the most efficient way to respond to emergencies, through ensuring system-wide capacity and maximising resources More clearly-defined roles and responsibilities, more predictability, clear leadership, strengthened partnership, more coherent linkages with govt, less gaps/duplication, and more strategic and targeted response Terminology used is irrelevant (sector/cluster) – importance is the approach and key principles underlying it!! Clusters/sectors should only be established at field level in response to priority needs identified

43 What does this mean for YOU?
Change attitudes and way you work – genuine partnerships and accountability! Build on achievements - ensure, deliver better product – IMPACT on vulnerable populations Improve preparedness and contingency planning Better linkages to recovery and development Improve support to governments and local capacity development


45 Any questions?

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