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We are a movement of local organizations with a bold ambition – to reshape the top-down humanitarian and development system to one that is locally driven and owned, and is built around equitable, dignified and accountable partnerships.

We want to increase genuine accountability to donors, the public, and affected communities by promoting greater transparency in local, national and international responses to humanitarian and development challenges. And we want people to be at the heart of every response so that donors at one end and affected communities at the other can see the quantity and quality of what is delivered and received. We want to close the gap between the traditional aid system and the communities it aims to serve.

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Vision and Mission


A world where local communities have the capacity, resources and agency to address the challenges that impact them.


To work towards restructuring the global response to human, economic and environmental challenges so that actions to address these are locally driven and owned, and promote equitable, dignified and accountable partnerships.

Our History

  • 2014

    The need for NEAR has been long overdue but was first affirmed by a study commissioned in 2014 by the Kenyan based NGO, Adeso into the demand, feasibility and scope of such a network. The report findings revealed widespread support for its creation.

  • 2015

    A side event at the Global Forum for Improving Humanitarian Action in New York in June 2015 saw over 20 leading organizations working with local communities officially endorse the network and reaffirm the need for a stronger local voice in the humanitarian and development system.

Ongoing consultations with local and national organizations in Africa, Asia, Middle East and Latin America provide further evidence for the network as well as a repository of voices from the communities in which they serve. It is these voices and issues that reaffirm the vital need for NEAR and are shaping the network’s strategy and framework.

All current members of the network are united by their credibility and deep roots in local communities.

Our Core Values

  • Humanity beyond identity

    We bring "humanity back to humanitarianism" by focusing solely on the people, and making sure that effective and dignified aid is delivered to people in need.

  • Inclusiveness

    We are a network of local actors that first recognizes the important role played by local actors in times of emergencies. We want to ensure that the muted voices are heard, and to promote a fair sharing of resources and equitable, dignified partnerships in the aid system.

  • Dignity

    We see vulnerable individuals not just as recipients of aid, but rather as people who are capable of contributing and leading response; with their own ideas, values, lifestyles, preferences, needs, abilities and desires.

  • Credibility and mutual accountability

    We are focused on increasing genuine accountability to donors, the public and affected communities by promoting transparency in local and international aid delivery systems so that donors at one end and beneficiaries at the other end arefully aware of the quantity and quality of aid delivered and received.

  • Independent

    While we depend on the support of our partners and donors, we push our own agenda, and are independent of outside influences. Our leading light is the vision and mission of this network.

Become a member

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P.O. BOX 70331-00400
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