Christian Aid commitments to the World Humanitarian Summit

Statement made by Loretta Minghella, Chief Executive of Christian Aid.

Christian Aid wholeheartedly supports the paradigm shifts called for by the Secretary General to “reinforce not replace national systems” and “anticipate not wait for crises”

Christian Aid has registered 11 commitments in support of the WHS reform agenda. In the short time available to me, I will only highlight a few here.

The High Level Panel on Humanitarian Financing noted: “in the global consultations of the WHS, one message made itself heard more loudly than all the others: a call for the localisation of aid”

Christian Aid demands a shift in power towards locally owned and locally led response. Our commitments today include that:

By 2018, in collaboration with Start Network partners, we will significantly strengthen the humanitarian capacities of at least 100 local and national NGOs, including through the “Shifting the Power”, “Financial Enablers” and “Transforming Surge Capacity” programmes

We will work with the Start Network to advocate for and set up a pioneering new ‘Start Local’ Fund, for the exclusive access of national and local NGOs.

In addition, Christian Aid has co-founded, with CAFOD, DanChurchAid and ADESO, the Charter for Change. 27 INGOs have now signed and over 120 national NGOs have endorsed our Charter, which makes 8 concrete pledges to reform our practice to strengthen the role of national actors, including:

  • by passing at least 20% of our funding direct to national NGOs,
  • by compensating national organisations if we recruit their staff during an emergency, and
  • by providing fair management, administrative and overhead costs to our partners.

We strongly welcome the emphasis accorded by the Secretary General to greater investment in resilience-building. Christian Aid’s commitments for WHS include to ensure that at least 10% of the funding raised for each major Christian Aid humanitarian appeal is invested in disaster risk reduction

Christian Aid supports the High Level Panel on Financing’s call for a Participation Revolution, that puts people at the centre. I especially welcome the Agenda for Humanity’s determination to empower and protect women and girls and eradicate sexual and gender-based violence. I commit that Christian Aid will significantly increase the percentage of our programmes that support local women’s groups and that promote women’s rights and empowerment

Finally, Christian Aid is proud to be a member of the ACT Alliance. Christian Aid supports the 11 commitments that ACT Alliance brings to the WHS. To name but one:

We will support the agency of people by substantially increasing the proportion of our humanitarian investment that goes to cash transfer programming. Before providing in-kind inputs, we will ask ourselves whether cash would work in this context.

Words are not enough to solve the escalating needs of people whose lives are blighted by crisis. The success of WHS will depend on how energetically we collectively deliver against the promises that we are all launching today. Let us all go home and do our utmost to turn these fine words into real action to changes the lives of the world’s most vulnerable people.


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