News Archive 2020

Empowering local organizations through the Charter 4 Change


Charter for Change is a document from 2019 signed by influential international humanitarian organizations, including Help, which have thus committed to upholding its provisions.

The aim of the Charter is to transform the way the humanitarian system works in order to allow local and national humanitarian and civil society organizations to play a bigger and more prominent role in responding to the numerous humanitarian crises around the world.

The 8-point Charter for Change underlines the numerous commitments of international humanitarian organizations designed to strengthen the capacity of local activists, increase the transparency of their work, and emphasize the importance of domestic organizations in humanitarian responses.

With the support of governments that are donors of humanitarian aid, the signatories of the Charter have committed to transfer at least 25 percent of humanitarian funding directly to local and national non-governmental organizations by 2020.

We convey the contents of the Charter 4 Change, which is also signed by Help – Hilfe zur Selbsthilfe

Localisation of Humanitarian Aid

We the undersigned organisations, working in humanitarian action welcome the extensive consultations
and discussions generated at the 2016 Istanbul World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) process.

Now is the time for humanitarian actors to commit to the recommendations arising through the WHS
process and deliver change within their own organisational ways of working.

We recognise that national and local actors can play an increased and more prominent role in
humanitarian response.

In the case of international NGO signatories:

-We commit our organisations to implement the 8-point Charter for Change by 2020 ensuring it is communicated effectively to staff, partners, donors and other stakeholders. We also commit to reporting annually on progress.

In the case of national and local NGOs working in partnership with international NGOs:

– We endorse and support this Charter for Change. We will hold our international NGO partners who are signatories of this Charter to account. We are actively seeking those who are not signatories to this Charter to sign up.

The 8-point Charter for Change

Point 1. Increase direct funding to national and local NGOs for humanitarian action:
As of 2017, only 0.4% of humanitarian aid was channelled directly to national non-government actors (NGOs and CSOs) for humanitarian work – a total of US$84.0 million out of US$27.3 billion1.

We commit through advocacy and policy influence on North American and European donors (including
institutional donors, foundations and private sector).

We encourage them to increase the year on year percentage of their humanitarian funding going to
national and local NGOs.

We commit that by 2020 at least 25% of our own humanitarian funding will be passed to national and
local NGOs.

We commit to introduce our NGO partners to our own direct donors with the aim of them accessing direct

Point 2. Reaffirm the Principles of Partnership: We endorse and have signed on to the Principles of
Partnership, (Equality, Transparency, Results-Oriented Approach, Responsibility and Complementarity)
introduced by the Global Humanitarian Platform in 2007.

Point 3. Increase transparency around resource transfers to national and local NGOs: A
significant change in approaches towards transparency is needed in order to build trust, accountability and efficiency of investments channelled to national actors via international intermediaries.

We commit to document the types of organisation we cooperate with in humanitarian response and to
publish these figures (or percentages) in our public accounts using the Interagency Standing Committee
(IASC) definition2 and the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) standard3.

Point 4.  Stop undermining local capacity: We commit to implement fair recruitment policies to
discourage the poaching of staff from national and local NGOs (as this severely undermines their capacity
to operate, particularly in the height of emergency response).

We will explore alternatives with our partners such as secondments, mentoring or supporting national
surge initiatives.

Point 5. Emphasise the importance of national actors: We undertake to advocate to donors to make
working through local and national actors’ part of their criteria for assessing framework partners and
calls for project proposals.

Point 6. Address subcontracting: Our local and national collaborators are involved in the design of
the programmes at the outset and participate in decision-making as equals in influencing programme
design and partnership policies.

Point 7. Robust organisational support and capacity strengthening: We will support local actors
to become robust organisations that continuously improve their role and share in the overall global
humanitarian response.

We undertake to pay adequate administrative support. A test of our seriousness in capacity building is
that by 2020 we will have allocated resources to support our partners in this.

We will publish the percentages of our humanitarian budget which goes directly to partners for
humanitarian capacity building by 2020.

Point 8. Communication to the media and the public about partners: In any communications to
the international and national media and to the public, we will promote the role of local and national
actors and acknowledge the work that they carry out and include them as spokespersons when security
considerations permit.

Signed by: (INGOs)

Asamblea de Cooperación por la Paz

CAFOD (Catholic Agency for Overseas Development)


Caritas Denmark

Caritas Norway

Caritas Spain

Christian Aid

Church of Sweden (Svenska Kyrkan)

Cordaid (Catholic Organisation for Relief and Development Aid)

CRS (Catholic Relief Services)

Danish Church Aid


Diakonie Katastrophenhilfe

Finn Church Aid

Help – Hilfe zur Selbsthilfe

HelpAge International

Human Appeal



International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF)

Islamic Relief Worldwide

Johanniter International Assistance/Johanniter-Auslandshife Kerk in Actie

Kindernothilfe e.V.

Norwegian Church Aid (NCA)

Norwegian People’s Aid


Rescue Global

SCIAF (Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund)

Tear Australia


Terram Pacis


WarChild UK

World Jewish Relief

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