During the 2019 International Council of Voluntary Associations (ICVA) Asia-Pacific regional meeting, participants had the possibility to learn about the Global Standard for CSO Accountability, and how a holistic and dynamic approach to accountability could contribute to a CSO effectiveness and sustainability by adapting to the evolving environment.
Held in Bangkok at the end of November, ICVA regional partners’ annual meeting – which brought together CSOs, funding bodies and multilateral agencies engaged in humanitarian aid – hosted two sessions on the Global Standard for CSO Accountability. The Australian Council for International Development (ACFID), and the Cooperation Committee for Cambodia (CCC) – two Global Standard partners – hosted an accountability masterclass where an overview of the current state of accountability was shared, and case studies on how the Global Standard gets applied in practice were showcased. Participants then had an opportunity to use the Rendir app to assess themselves against the Global Standards 12 commitments. The session concluded with participants raising questions on alignment and how a reference standard could be used for adapting an existing one, as well as how to manage and uphold the Global Standard.
In addition, ACFID also participated in an Accountability roundtable with the Core Humanitarian Standard on Quality and Accountability (CHS). The CHS sets nine commitments that organizations and individuals in humanitarian response can use to enhance the quality and effectiveness of the assistance provided. Indeed, during the formulation of the Global Standard, a mapping exercise of a few existing international standards was conducted – including the CHS, which then became an important reference for the work undertaken around the GS. And a few GS partners had been actively involved in the CHS as well.
This a key issue as the region is one of the most affected by natural disaster events such as such as earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, and tsunamis. As this Making All Voices Count (MAVC) report from the Philippines shows it, accountability of humanitarian response to affected people and communities has attracted greater attention by donors, government and civil society due to various natural disaster events around the globe. The importance of mapping synergies between both global standards (the GS and CHS) was highlighted during this roundtable, particularly as the guidance materials and indicators developed for the Global Standard found inspiration in the CHS guidance notes and indicators document.