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Fresh UK aid funding for small charities and humanitarian organisations

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Aid is delivered from a truck

Small specialist organisations will get new UK funding so they can help aid workers on the frontline respond to humanitarian disasters, the International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt will announce tomorrow (Monday, 18 March). She will also lay out her vision for the Great Partnerships initiative, setting out what “we could achieve if we enabled all our nation has to offer to put behind the delivery of the Global Goals”.

In a keynote speech at the Bond Annual Conference in London tomorrow, Ms Mordaunt will confirm that DFID will support members of the Humanitarian 2 Humanitarian (H2H) network, providing the network with £3.35million over three years.

H2H is made up of small international organisations, provides specialist services, such as mapping and translation, in disaster zones to aid agencies delivering humanitarian assistance. A quarter of the not-for-profit organisations are British.

At the Bond Conference, Europe’s biggest international development event, she will also say that “some of the best and most innovative work” in the aid sector done by small organisations.

Ms Mordaunt is expected to say of UK aid support for H2H:

“DFID will make it easier for small, innovative organisations doing heroic work to respond to global disasters.

“The UK has world class organisations, specialist in areas like mapping and translation. The services they supply can often mean the difference between life and death. This funding will help them get on the ground more quickly and support the delivery of life-saving aid on the frontline.”

When a humanitarian crisis occurs, DFID will work with the H2H Network to identify the types of services required. Examples of the partners that could be supported include:

MapAction, which provides real-time mapping data to assess how to access areas in need;

BBC Media Action, Translators without Borders and Internews, which help aid workers better communicate and share information withaffected communities; and

Ground Truth Solutions, which helps bring the perspective of people affected by crises into the planning and management of humanitarian emergencies.

The H2H network, made up of 60 organisations, was founded in 2016 to support innovative approaches to drive better quality humanitarian responses.

It was also confirmed today (17 March) that Ms Mordaunt will announce plans to lift the current funding cap on the Small Charities Challenge Fund (SCCF) to support outstanding, small, grassroots UK charities working in developing countries, helping them to unlock new partnerships and fresh thinking, making it easier for small UK charities to access the aid budget.

The fund was launched as a £4million pilot programme in July 2017. Charities can receive grants of up to £50,000 under the scheme.

Penny Mordaunt will say of small charities: 

“People often associate the work UK aid does with large charities and organisations, but some of the best and most innovative work is being done by small organisations. In every community across the UK there are amazing people inventing new ways to solve problems and improve lives. I see this as I travel around the UK. I see pictures of development projects on the walls of offices, pubs, schools, community centres and places of worship.

“I think there is great strength in helping those Britons connect with the rest of the world and enabling the hundreds of smaller organisations, that make up the lion’s share of UK international charities by number, to achieve their ambitions.

“This summer we will be the launching Fund in full. It will be nimbler, easier to apply to and always open for applications. And we will expand to meet demand.

“I want every community in the UK to be able to establish that connection and show the world what Britain is about.”

Ms Mordaunt will refer in her Bond speech to charities which have already received SCCF funding. This includes Interburns, a burns specialist charity from Wales, which is working with the Ethiopian government to introduce a national strategy to prevent and treat burns – one of the leading causes of disability among Ethiopian children.

At the speech, the International Development Secretary is also expected to outline her vision for the Great Partnerships initiative, setting out what “we could achieve if we enabled all our nation has to offer to put behind the delivery of the Global Goals”.

Ms Mordaunt will also talk in her speech about her Great Partnerships vision.

She is expected to say:

“There are many things about our nation of which I am proud not least the huge amount citizens give to charity every year. But in addition to that it is our talents, or technical expertise, or science base and our great institutions and organisations that make me proud. And it is what they bring that makes us relevant to so many nations around the world.

“From the City of London, to the Royal Society, from the H&S Executive, to the Scouts, from the FA to the NHS. On Friday I visited the RNLI in my hometown. As well as saving lives in the UK for 190 years they have helped more than 30 nations around the world build services and systems that prevent drowning and rescue people. It is a great partnership that they have. In return for building capacity in other nations they get to build capacity at home by learning new skills and creating new innovations.

“And that can be said for so many other organisations whether they sit in the private sector the public sector or the third sector. Just think what we could achieve if we enabled all that our nation has to offer to be put behind the delivery of the Global Goals. That is the aim of the Great Partnerships initiative, working out how we connect our people, our discoveries, talents, skills and knowledge to the relevant problems and opportunities across the globe.”

The Bond Annual Conference is the largest international development conference in Europe bringing together more than 1,000 people from across the international development and humanitarian sectors

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