A participation revolution: include people receiving aid in making the decisions which affect their lives

A participation revolution: include people receiving aid in making the decisions which affect their lives

A participation revolution: include people receiving aid in making the decisions which affect their lives

Participation Revolution seeks to integrate meaningful participation[1] in practice.It seeks to support permanent and sustainable change in the way we do business, promote the link between effective participation and the quality and effectiveness of humanitarian response and promote the evidence that participation is happening at the agency level through Grand Bargain Annual reporting.

Grand Bargain (GB) workstream 6 views systematic accountability and inclusion as essential to meeting organizational and collective standards and commitments, including the IASC CAAP and the Core Humanitarian Standard on Quality and Accountability (CHS). Coherent linkages between GB Workstream 6 and IASC Results Group 2 are evidenced through complementary approaches to agency[2]-level actions (primarily GB Workstream 6) and collective-level change (primarily RG2).

GB Workstream 6 therefore focuses on agency and project efforts; leveraging the Grand Bargain’s ability to influence a broader stakeholder group toward transformative change and use the Grand Bargain’s annual reporting cycle to capture and promote best practice at the Donor and Agency/NGO level, while complementing collective response-wide reporting gathered by OCHA and IASC RG 2 in relation to Humanitarian Response Plans (HRPs) and the Global Humanitarian Overview (GHO).

We note that the good practices to achieve the GB Participation Revolution collective commitments for aid organizations, as outlined in the Success Indicators section 2, are largely operationalized by the IASC Results Group 2, making the IASC and Grand Bargain highly complementary in the effort to drive transformative change.

[1] Note that the definition of Participation used by the workstream was agreed on March 8th 2017 and is available here.

[2] This document uses the term ‘Agency’ to refer to UN operational agencies such as UNHCR or WFP, INGOs, Local NGOs and all other Aid Organizations.

The Grand Bargain Signatories commitment (2016):

It is necessary to include the people affected by humanitarian crises and their communities in our decisions to be certain that the humanitarian response is relevant, timely, effective and efficient. To do so, it is important to provide accessible information, ensure that an effective process for participation and feedback is in place and that design and management decisions are responsive to the views of affected communities and people. Donors and aid organisations should work to ensure that the voices of the most vulnerable groups considering gender, age, ethnicity, language and special needs are heard and acted upon. This will create an environment of greater trust, transparency and accountability. The following commitments will help promote the Core Humanitarian Standard and the IASC Commitments to Accountability to Affected Populations.

Aid organisations and donors commit to:

  1. Improve leadership and governance mechanisms at the level of the humanitarian country team and cluster/sector mechanisms to ensure engagement with and accountability to people and communities affected by crises.
  2. Develop common standards and a coordinated approach for community engagement and participation, with the emphasis on inclusion of the most vulnerable, supported by a common platform for sharing and analysing data to strengthen decision-making, transparency, accountability and limit duplication.
  3. Strengthen local dialogue and harness technologies to support more agile, transparent but appropriately secure feedback.
  4. Build systematic links between feedback and corrective action to adjust programming.

Donors commit to:

  1. Fund flexibly to facilitate programme adaptation in response to community feedback.
  2. Invest time and resources to fund these activities. Aid organisations commit to:
  3. Ensure that, by the end of 2017, all humanitarian response plans – and strategic monitoring of them - demonstrate analysis and consideration of inputs from affected communities.

Co-convenors: USA and SCHR

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