SCHRs mission is to bring together major international humanitarian actors with common values and shared principles. We work in a number of ways, including:
Sharing relevant information among member agencies and fostering cooperation at all levels;
Highlighting issues of humanitarian concern and, where possible, adopting common positions;
Establishing working groups to study in depth relevant humanitarian issues and policies, especially on standards, accountability, security and protection;
- Engaging, where possible, in joint advocacy on humanitarian issues and situations;
Engaging with the UN humanitarian system, and actively participating in the Inter Agency Standing Committee (IASC);
Playing a leading role in ongoing debates
about humanitarian standards;
Conducting peer reviews to learn from one
another and improve our humanitarian response;
Regularly bringing the principals of our
members together to build trust leading to further synergies at all
levels of our work.
Sponsor of the Code of Conduct for the
International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and NGOs in Disaster
Relief and a founding member of the Sphere project, SCHR supports
humanitarian policy development and aims at closing the policy -
practice gap. It learns from experience by following up on studies
arising out of SCHR member work as practitioners in humanitarian action
and disaster management, forms positions around humanitarian issues of
concern, shares information and knowledge and fosters cooperation at all
The Peer Review Process is a recent example of collaboration on learning and accountability. Based on the West Africa scandal of sexual exploitation in humanitarian operations in 2002 and the following IASC process to prevent sexual abuse and exploitation, SCHR decided to embark on a peer review process on this particular issue, using OECD-DAC peer review methodology. The first round of reviews was finalised early 2007. A review showed that the peer review process can enhance learning both within and between organisations. SCHR is now conducting a second peer review on Accountability to Affected Population, which in addition to SCHR organizations includes a United Nations agency, UNHCR. The purpose of the peer review is to strengthen and deepen efforts that demonstrate accountability to disaster-affected populations. This has two dimensions: firstly, organisational policies and processes: and secondly, staff thinking, conduct and practice. Ultimately, it is hoped that the peer review will help bring about important and lasting changes – within organisations (in terms of ‘culture’ and capacities) and within individuals (in terms of their attitudes and capabilities). In its aim to support increased quality, accountability and learning within the humanitarian sector, SCHR has also decided on a third peer review topic, Working with Partners.
» Work Focus
SCHR focuses its work on three segments, a field
program-led agenda, a proactive quality and accountability agenda and an
agenda focused on interaction with the United Nations, mainly through
The field program-led agenda looks at
"current action" and neglected humanitarian contexts and
comprises sharing program information and fostering co-operation, and
proposing and taking joint SCHR (or "some of SCHR") action on
issues of common humanitarian concern.
The standards and accountability agenda focuses on
the peer review process as well as promotion of the Sphere Humanitarian
Charter and Minimum Standards, the Code of Conduct in Disaster Relief
and other quality and accountability initiatives.
The third segment focuses on strategic UN
humanitarian issues, currently largely encapsulated in the humanitarian
reform vehicle and relating to humanitarian coordination and NGO-UN
relationships and responsibilities, capacity issues and clusters,
benchmarking, standards and indicators and humanitarian financing,
including the new CERF.
Drawing strength from its diversity, SCHR will
continue to debate issues in its bi-annual CEO meetings, inviting other
actors to be part of the discussion as appropriate, looking at neutral
and independent humanitarian action, civil-military relations, the
future of different standards and accountability initiatives, a changing
hazardscape or other issues on the frontline of humanitarian action, and
supported by its main "mini-think tank", the Policy Working
Group, consisting of emergency directors and policy heads.
Since 2006 SCHR is an active contributor to the
Global Humanitarian Platform, a forum for exchange between the IASC
Principals and major global NGOs.
SCHR has its office in Geneva under the leadership
Mr. Charles-Antoine Hofmann, its Executive Secretary.