Last month the Humanitarian Assistance and Resilience Programme (HARP-Facility) team were joined by the British Ambassador to Myanmar, Dan Chugg; political economy expert, David Mathieson; the Department for International Development and numerous humanitarian partners for an afternoon of knowledge sharing, at the ‘HARP-F: Looking to the Future’ event in Yangon, Myanmar.
Over the past two years, the DFID-funded HARP-F programme has been delivered by Crown Agents in response to the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Myanmar. Operationalised by a dedicated network of local and international partners, this unique DFID instrument helps address humanitarian needs, builds resilience and reduces vulnerability of populations affected by conflict and natural disasters in Myanmar.
On a global level, the programme serves to address key humanitarian reform agenda issues, such as the need to ensure localisation of responses and multi-year commitments of funding, in line with the commitments of the ‘Grand Bargain’ agenda agreed at the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul.
To date, HARP-F has committed over £46 million to provide services in food and water provision, sanitation, health and nutrition, shelter and protection to the most rural and marginalised communities in the country. The humanitarian needs of 366,000 people have been met thus far, with the programme set to expand its reach in 2019 and 2020.
Crown Agents HARP-F Fund Director, Sonia Zambakides, stated the main purpose of the recent event was not only to bring greater awareness to HARP-F, but also to act as an interactive platform whereby various partners from across the programme could come together to share learnings, resources and ideas for development going forward.
“Our focus is on constructing new ways of working, where access to conflict-affected, hard to reach populations is limited; harvesting the knowledge that we develop along the way – on what works and does not work – to deliver humanitarian assistance in a protracted conflict and natural disaster setting. This event was one of the first stages in that process.”
HARP-F’s collaborative approach is mirrored in their commitment to sharing innovative humanitarian response resources with the wider international development community. Several new HARP-F models were showcased at the event, including the Community Based Analytical Model (CBAM), which is due to be piloted in Rakhine state. CBAM is designed to consolidate and operationalise secondary data from a variety of sources on political, social and economic situations in the region. Informant interviews will be conducted to ensure non-traditional voices are included in humanitarian decision-making structures. The data and findings will then be made available to non-governmental organisations, United Nations agencies, funds and donors.
Commenting on the direction of the programme, Sonia said, “the Humanitarian Assistance and Resilience Programme is ‘looking to the future’ by finding cutting-edge approaches to delivering humanitarian response methods to meet the acute needs of the Myanmar populations. Knowledge exchange platforms such as this event are key not only to that process, but also in bettering humanitarian assistance across the sector through lessons learned.”