Community philanthropy, humanitarian efforts and long-term impact: A contribution to the World Humanitarian Summit

The growth in community philanthropy organizations in Central and Eastern Europe and the Global South locates them in many areas that have experienced natural disasters/emergencies, the impact of violent political conflict, or indeed, the complexities where both circumstances overlap. There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that locally based community philanthropy organizations have considerable potential to complement humanitarian efforts and interests through:

  • Supporting the voice and participation of affected peoples and communities;
  • Promoting programmes of disaster/emergency preparedness;
  • Managing funding programmes that can contribute to long term community reconstruction and resilience;
  • Managing funding programmes that can underpin efforts for peacebuilding and conflict transformation; and,
  • Contributing towards the building of relations through networking and policy convening on issues of importance in fragmented communities.

While the resource base of community philanthropy organizations that have emerged over the past two decades is often limited, there is an infrastructure in place that can relate to local communities and groups as well as managing funding streams in an accountable and transparent manner. It is an infrastructure that places great emphasis on long-term planning and sustainability, in addition to the need to be flexible in response to local priorities, opportunities and needs. In the light of the considerable challenges facing humanitarian policy planning, the synergies with the growing community philanthropy field should be examined and developed.

Author: Avila Kilmurray

Published: May 2015

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