Integration of national NGOs in the coordination of humanitarian action in Burundi
The coordination of humanitarian action in Burundi is undergoing adjustments in line with the changing context. In May 2016, during the Istanbul Summit, major donors committed to increase the budget allocated to people in need and thus improve effectiveness and efficiency of humanitarian action. Commitments made during the Summit include 25% of humanitarian funding to be allocated to local organizations to improve vulnerable people response by 2020; strengthen the capacity and coordination of national organizations where they exist and integrate national and local NGOs into humanitarian coordination mechanisms in accordance with humanitarian principles.
So far, six national Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) have submitted their projects to the Project Modules (PAHO) with one of the organizations received funding which represents 0.02 percent of the overall envelope of $USD 195 million requested through the humanitarian response plan. 27 percent of the funds have been allocated to international NGOs and UN agencies with about thirty NGOs accessing funding through their partnerships with United Nations agencies or ENGOs.
The Humanitarian Country Team (EHP) with contribution from OCHA would like to implement one of the summit recommendations through strengthening the participation, representation, and leadership of local and national actors in the conduct of humanitarian operations. Until recently, National NGOs have been implementing partners of either UN Agencies or international NGOs.
Humanitarian coordination in Burundi is anchored on sectoral working groups coordinated by the ministries in charge of the sector and supported and led by UN agencies including OCHA. It is imperative to have a close and effective cooperation between the mechanisms for coordinating humanitarian action and those set up by the Government. This will help in saving lives affected by natural disasters and various conflicts that the country has experienced as well as restore human dignity.
In Burundi, humanitarian coordination is provided by 62 organizations, 26 percent represent national NGOs, compared to 40 percent representing international NGOs and 2 percent represented by the Burundian Red Cross. United Nations entities are represented at 15 per cent, while private organizations occupy 23 per cent. A national NGO co-facilitates the functioning of the Sub-Group on Child Protection. These humanitarian actors face logistical, administrative, and legal constraints while performing their duties. To limit these impacts, there is need to strengthen the capacities of partners and national organizations to have easy access to the population they collaborate with.