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Start Fund: Tropical storm response, Somalia, 2018

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About us

A new era of humanitarian action


Start Network is made up of more than 50 aid agencies across five continents, ranging from large international organisations to national NGOs. Together, our aim is to transform humanitarian action through innovation, fast funding, early action, and localisation.
We're tackling what we believe are the biggest systemic problems that the sector faces - problems including slow and reactive funding, centralised decision-making, and an aversion to change, means that people affected by crises around the world, do not receive the best help fast enough, and needless suffering results.
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Localisation


We believe that a more balanced international aid system, which shifts power to those closest to the front-line, will generate more effective and appropriate responses for people affected by crises.

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New froms of financing

New forms of financing


Our pooled funds enable fast and early action to tackle the kind of crises that are often overlooked by other funding mechanisms. Our risk financing pilots are introducing new ways of working that can save even more lives.

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Collective innovation


New ways of working are needed to tackle the challenges we face. By innovating collectively we can share expertise, insights and perspectives to shape a more effective humanitarian system.

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An international network

Today the Start Network extends to over 40 members and their 7000 partner organisations, employing more than a quarter of a million people across 200 countries and territories.
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Latest news

News Article

German Federal Foreign Office supports innovative programme for early humanitarian action

The German Federal Foreign Office (GFFO) has announced its support of €4.5 million for a programme of activities that will embed early humanitarian action across a global network of NGOs.

11Jan21

Blog Post

10 things Start Network did in its 10th year

2020 was an eventful year, it was also Start Network's 10 year anniversary. Here we look back at 10 things Start Network did in its 10th year.

22Dec20

News Article

MERF ends after providing assistance to more than 175,000 people

After more than three years, the Start Network’s Migration Emergency Response Fund (MERF) has closed. The fund was set up to address the unpredictable nature of the mixed migration context across the Mediterranean and rapidly respond to new or emerging needs. It also aimed to improve the effectiveness and understanding of migration responses and trends.

18Dec20

Blog Post

Mulling over the MERF programme

Melina joined the Start Network in 2016. Before this she had been working with the International Rescue Committee in Mali as their grants manager, and this is where she had her first experience with the Start Network through two initiatives. The first was a Start Fund Alert (Alert 36) in response to internal displacement and the second was Start Response Ebola Preparedness Programme. Both these introduced Melina to very different ways of working with rapid and collaborative decision-making processes and implementation in just 45 days. Soon after, she joined the Start Network as a Start Fund Programme Officer establishing the Start Fund Regional Advisor roles as well as leading on a growing number of alerts, before moving to the Migration Emergency Response Fund (MERF) in 2018 first as the Regional Coordinator based out of Tunis and then as the Programme Manager. She joined MERF as it started its second phase and here reflects on some of the learnings along the way.  

17Dec20

Latest resources

Resource

Using Standing Operating Procedures (SOP) for Humanitarian Responses During a Pandemic

Start Fund Bangladesh developed standing operating procedures (SOP) after taking stock of current happenings and in-depth discussion with donors and humanitarian leaders. The SOP targeted safety measures at multiple levels to ensure the ultimate prevention of transmission at the community level. Some of these included: Tracking physical health of staff and volunteers throughout the project period; In addition, all personnel involved in the project needed access to personal protective gear (masks and sanitizers) Adopting new practices at the organisational level: providing accommodation facilities to staff and volunteers if needed; giving compensatory allowances to those working in direct response; increasing organisational cleanliness as per WHO standards Following strict guidelines during response and: distributing relief items through door-to-door delivery and drawing distant circles.

27May20

Resource

Monthly Risk Briefing: May 2020

The monthly risk briefing reports on new, emerging or deteriorating situations; therefore, ongoing events that are considered to be unchanged are not featured and risks that are beyond the scope and scale of the Start Fund are also not featured. It is collated by the Start Network Anticipation and Risk Financing team using information from academia and research institutes, government departments, ACAPS, global risk indexes, risk information provided by Start Members and their partners, and the media. Key risks are shared and collated each month with FOREWARN input.

12May20

Resource

Basis risk in disaster risk financing for humanitarian action

This paper offers a number of potential technical solutions to assessing, managing and reducing basis risk. It acknowledges that, in order to be effective, these need to be accompanied by political and coordination efforts, and a wider look at DRF operational systems that are fit for crisis settings. The authors invite further ideas and discussion on this topic, including any opportunities to test and innovate new operational designs.

21Apr20

Resource

COVID19 Learning from four disease outbreak responses

At Start Network we always aim to learn from experience. So, we have endeavoured to analyse the data and information from past Start Fund responses in order to present a set of lessons for COVID-19 projects.

16Apr20

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Start Network members