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Global civil society network commits to mitigating the effects of climate change through early humanitarian action

Press release

Start Network, a global network of more than 40 aid charities, has today signalled its commitment to help millions of people become more resilient to climate-related crises by strengthening early humanitarian financing and action.

In signing the deceleration for the UK-led Risk-informed Early Action Partnership (REAP), the Start Network has made a number of commitments up to 2025, which contribute to the overall targets of the REAP.

The Start Network’s commitments up to 2025 include:

  • Reach 5 million more people with timely humanitarian funds, connected to quality risk analysis or effective early action plans, to mitigate the impact of predictable disasters. 
  • Catalyse a local coalition of civil society actors, with coordinated response plans and pre-positioned financing, enabling them to assume a clearer role within national climate adaptation strategies. 
  • Lead on collective evidence and learning activities to build the evidence base for early action, and facilitate the exchange of best practice


The Start Network aims to achieve these commitments by expanding its existing humanitarian financing tools, which currently enable timely and early humanitarian action, and connecting them into a framework of national and global financing mechanisms. The aim is for aid charities to have access to a suite of  financing mechanisms for different types of crisis, in advance for predictable disasters, or quickly following unexpected crises. 

REAP is a new partnership involving the governments of the UK, Egypt, Finland, with the Met Office, the IFRC, Start Network and other partners. The aim of the partnership is to make one billion people safer from disasters by creating a new partnership to greatly expand early action financing and improve early warning systems and the capacity to act on the risks they identify. This will save lives, protect livelihoods and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of response. 

Christina Bennett, Start Network’s incoming CEO said: “Most disasters are predictable. But being unprepared means that we miss the critical opportunities to save lives and build long-term resilience. The Start Network aims to change this by shifting to a proactive rather than a reactive approach, using early humanitarian action and pre-agreed financing. Our commitment to the Risk-informed Early Action Partnership will enable us and other partners to approach this in a coordinated way.”

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Notes to editors

For further information contact: Helen James, Head of Communications & Digital, Start Network,


Available for interview: 

Emma Flaherty, Start Network’s Crisis Anticipation Adviser

Emily Montier, Start Network’s Labs Manager


Start Network - @startnetwork

The Start Network is made up of more than 40 national and international aid agencies from five continents. Their aim is to deliver effective aid, harnessing the power and knowledge of the network to make faster and better decisions to help people affected by crises. 

The Start Network existing humanitarian financing tools include;

The Start Fund, which releases funding within 72 hours of a crisis alert, in the immediate aftermath of a crisis or in anticipation of one, enabling the network and its partners to act early and minimise the impact.

Proactive Drought Financing, which brings together the scientific modelling of drought risks, contingency planning and pre-positioned financing. This includes insurance-based initiatives, such as ARC Replica in Senegal, as well as use of trigger-based contingency funds, such as our Proactive Drought Fund in Madagascar. 


About REAP

Read more about REAP

Convening partners of REAP (as of 20/09/19) are:

Countries: Bangladesh, Belize, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Jamaica, Japan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malawi, Norway, St Lucia, United Kingdom.

Organisations: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Green Climate Fund, Global Network of Civil Society Organisations for Disaster Reduction, Global Resilience Partnership, Global Water Partnership, International Center for Tropical Agriculture, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Mercy Corps, Met Office, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Overseas Development Institute, Public Private Partnership Europe, Practical Action, Resurgence, Start Network, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, World Food Programme, World Meteorological Organization.


Keep reading:

  • by Helen James

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