Resources for diaspora organisations

The Humanitarian Principles in humanitarian action

Humanitarian action is regulated by binding and non-binding international humanitarian and human rights law, as well as the humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence.

Humanity: Human suffering must be addressed wherever it is found. The purpose of humanitarian action is to protect life and health and ensure respect for human beings.

Neutrality: Humanitarian actors must not take sides in hostilities or engage in controversies of a political, racial, religious or ideological nature.

Impartiality: Humanitarian action must be carried out on the basis of need alone, making no distinctions on the basis of nationality, race, gender, religious belief, class or political opinions.

Independence: Humanitarian action must be autonomous from the political, economic, military or other objectives that any actor may hold in relation to areas where humanitarian action is being implemented.

Links & Resources

Overview of the International Humanitarian Architecture

The Core Humanitarian Standard on Quality and Accountability sets out Nine Commitments that organisations and individuals involved in humanitarian response can use to improve the quality and effectiveness of the assistance they provide. It also facilitates greater accountability to communities and people affected by crisis: knowing what humanitarian organisations have committed to will enable them to hold those organisations to account.

CHS Alliance forms one of the largest and most influential networks of organisations committed to improving humanitarian and development work through the application of standards

Humanitarian Response info is provided by UN OCHA to support humanitarian operations globally

ALNAP is a unique system-wide network dedicated to improving humanitarian performance through increased learning and accountability

Crowdfunding for Emergencies, Think Brief published by OCHA Policy and Studies Series

The Sphere Handbook Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Humanitarian Response

E-learning Courses for humanitarian actors

E-learning Courses from Harvard Humanitarian Initiative. The Harvard Humanitarian Initiative offers the following e-learning programs for humanitarian actors:

  • Humanitarian Needs Asssement training. This free online course seeks to prepare learners to recognize and analyze emerging challenges in the humanitarian field. The course explores the ethical and professional principles that guide humanitarian response to conflict and disaster. Participants will learn the legal and historical frameworks that shaped these principles, test their applicability to the challenges faced by humanitarian actors today.
  • Humanitarian Response to Conflict and Disaster Course. The Humanitarian Needs Assessment E-learning program is designed to provide an overview of the Humanitarian Needs Assessment process. The process can look very different depending on the scale of a disaster, the role of humanitarian organizations involved and the resources available to any particular organization or to organizations collectively at the country level. We’ll look at assessment from various angles—from the field level to the capitol level—and we’ll see the process through the eyes of an assessment coordinator as well as enumerators on the ground.
  • The Building a Better Response e-learning course aims to enhance the capacity of national and international NGO workers and other humanitarian actors to engage with the international humanitarian coordination system in a manner that improves overall coordination and responds to the needs of crisis-affected populations.
  • Access to all Resources and E-learning Courses from Harvard Humanitarian Initiative

Resources for the Syrian Diaspora

OCHA Website for Syria
OCHA, under the leadership of the respective Humanitarian Coordinators, manages four Country-Based Pooled Funds (CBPFs) for the Syria crisis from Syria, Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon. The CBPFs in the region have been designed to support and align a comprehensive response to the Syria crisis by expanding the delivery of humanitarian assistance, increasing humanitarian access, and strengthening partnerships with local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

Information from Humanitarian Response

Best practice guides for Syrian local organisations
The Association of German-Syrian Humanitarian Organisations (Verband Deutsch-Syrischer Hilfsvereine e.V.) has published in cooperation with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) a guide with best practices that gathers their experience in emergency assistance and longer-term projects in Syria and neighboring countries together.

The guides can be downloaded in German or Arabic from below:


Resources for the Somali Diaspora

Somalia 2015 Humanitarian Response Plan, OCHA, 2015

Resources for the Sierra Leonean Diaspora

2015 WHO Strategic Response Plan for West Africa Ebola Outbreak, WHO, 2015