The Humanitarian system has marked its one year anniversary of the World Humanitarian Summit, and the launch of the Grand Bargain agreement, where key commitments in reinforcing national and local systems and ensuring accountability to affected people was realized.
The Grand Bargain, an agreement entered into by more than 30 of the biggest donors and aid providers at the World Humanitarian Summit in 2016, was an important step in the ’localization’ journey. The Grand Bargain committed donors and aid organizations to providing 25 per cent of global humanitarian funding to local and national responders by 2020, along with financing that is unearmarked (unrestricted), increased multi-year funding to ensure greater predictability and continuity in humanitarian response, to incorporate capacity strengthening in partnership agreements, to reduce barriers that prevent partnerships between local and national responders with donors and include local and national responders in international coordination mechanisms.
The evidence presented, over the last few years, suggests that the global humanitarian system is stretched beyond its capacity. The number of people in need of humanitarian assistance has almost doubled, over the past ten years, and is expected to increase. Substantial funding shortfalls persist. More people are affected by conflict and disaster, more frequently, and for longer than in previous decades. Few would deny the humanitarian ecosystem is at full stretch and we are witnessing a growing, albeit late, recognition that local and national organizations play a pivotal and cost effective role in emergency response.