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Key Issues

Ifo extension camp at Dadaab designed to deal with the fresh influx of refugees from Somalia. Photograph: B. Bannon/UNHCR

In this section we provide an introduction to key issues within the humanitarian sphere, outlining NDRF’s role in these areas, share best practices and highlight some innovative policies and ideas. Each section includes a resource list with relevant reports, guidelines, tools and useful links, as well as the latest news.

While many topics, themes and ideas surrounding humanitarian work and disaster prevention are interrelated, we have divided them into five key sections to make content more manageable and easier to access.

These are: 

Standards: The standards section draws together material from NGOs and humanitarian agencies who are working towards creating indicators and tools which are geared towards ensuring all stakeholders are acting in an accountable and transparent manner through agreed standards and frameworks.

Disaster Risk Reduction: This section looks at the steps and measures that stakeholders take in reducing risks in preparation for disasters. The section has been split into local and global initiatives and looks at both structural and non-structural best practices.

Humanitarian Assistance and Response: When disasters happen, environments become swarmed with humanitarian actors, governments, militaries, police and other stakeholders all attempting to alleviate human suffering. This section looks at the numerous actors involved in humanitarian response efforts and outlines current literature on best practices for those groups.

Civil-Military Interaction: This section looks at the necessary but often difficult relationship between humanitarian agencies and militaries during humanitarian response.

Pacific Relief: While the other sections all contain material that is relevant to the Pacific, given the focus of NDRF and its members, this section contains material that is aimed towards the Pacific region specifically, including reports, outcome documents, and current projects in the area.

While the material in these sections is constantly expanding and being refined, if you have any feedback on the content of these pages we would love to hear from you. Please email melanie@cid.org.nz to make your views heard.

Resources:

GDACS Alert The Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System provides near real-time alerts about natural disasters around the world and tools to facilitate response coordination, including media monitoring, map catalogues and Virtual On-Site Operations Coordination Centre.

Global Humanitarian Assistance: Resource The Global Humanitarian Assistance team comprises researchers, analysts and policy advisors with practical field experience and backgrounds in development financing and reporting. Covering Global Trends; Governments; Delivery; Financing Mechanisms; Domestic Response; Conflict and the Military; and Scale of Needs.

Humanitarian Early Warning Service: Alert The IASC Humanitarian Early Warning Service (HEWSweb) is an inter-agency partnership project aimed at establishing a common platform for humanitarian early warnings and forecasts for natural hazards.

Humanitarian Practice Network:News, Resource HPN is an independent forum for policy-makers, practitioners and others working in or on the humanitarian sector to share and disseminate information, analysis and experience, and to learn from it. HPN plays a key role in examining policy developments and distilling practice.

Pacific Disaster NetAlert, Event, News, Resource The Virtual Centre for Disaster Risk Management in the Pacific Region. The Web Portal and Database System is designed to be the largest and most comprehensive information resource for Disaster Risk Management for the Pacific Island Countries.

Prevention Web: News, Resource PreventionWeb serves the information needs of the disaster risk reduction community, including the development of information exchange tools to facilitate collaboration.

ReliefWeb: News, Policy, Resource ReliefWeb is your source for timely, reliable and relevant humanitarian information and analysis.

UNOCHA: News, Policy, Resource OCHA is the part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies. OCHA's mission is to: mobilise and coordinate effective and principled humanitarian action in partnership with national and international actors in order to alleviate human suffering in disasters and emergencies; advocate the rights of people in need; promote preparedness and prevention; facilitate sustainable solutions.