Humanitarian Aid

Department for International Development written question – answered on 21st February 2019.

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Photo of Chris Law Chris Law Shadow SNP Spokesperson (International Development)

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, pursuant to the Answer of 13 February 2019 to Question 217654, what steps were taken to determine which Grand Bargain commitments are the most critical enablers of transformative change.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt Minister of State (Department for International Development) (Joint with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office), Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

DFID is committed to the Grand Bargain. We are focussing on areas which are central to the UK’s Humanitarian Reform Policy of saving as many lives as possible in humanitarian crises, whilst ensuring value for money in the prioritised allocation of humanitarian resources - where DFID can have the strongest impact on achieving a more effective, efficient and accountable humanitarian system.

Evidence shows that cash can be cheaper to deliver and more effective than sending goods in-kind. Cash promotes the dignity of crisis affected populations by allowing them to prioritise needs themselves, and can contribute to supporting local markets in times of crisis. DFID co-leads the Grand Bargain workstream on cash and has been a world-leader in driving the increased use of cash in humanitarian response.

Accountability to people in crises is critical to improving the quality and impact of humanitarian assistance. Through our Grand Bargain commitments, we are working closely with other donors and aid organisations to ensure people receiving aid are included in the decisions which affect their lives.

The introduction of independent Joint Needs Assessments is vital to ensure a strong evidence-base, which leads to a stronger prioritisation of humanitarian assistance in responses based on the severity and urgency of need. This has the potential to reduce conflicts of interest between agencies fundraising for their own appeals, ensure better value for money and introduce more accountability into the system.

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