Video On Demand

Bolstering Local Actors’ Frontline Response

April 26, 2023 • 1:00 – 2:15 pm EDT

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The humanitarian sector has begun to recognize the significance of shifting operational decision-making and leadership to local and national partners. In many cases, local NGOs demonstrate unique advantages in terms of negotiating access, cultivating acceptance with authorities and communities, and providing nuanced strategic support to humanitarian operations based on their local understanding and networks. Yet local actors are hindered by a lack of sustained funding, restricted by donor and INGO administrative requirements, and face a higher “burden of proof” to demonstrate their neutrality and independence in highly political environments.

Humanitarian environments are in need improved donor engagement, funding, legal assurances, and technical support to mitigate existing and future crises. This panel brings together international and local responders to discuss the role local frontline responders play in crisis, how the international community can better support first responders, and highlight positive practices that organizations can adopt and mainstream to support vulnerable communities.

Hadeil Ali
Director and Fellow, Diversity and Leadership in International Affairs Project
Visiting Assistant Professor of International Relations, Bucknell University