We believe in the ability of the grass-root organization to provide sustainable solutions to crises. Many times, local solution are most powerful, as the community can react faster knowing what the needs are and how they can be solved. We also believe that Diaspora groups can act as a very strong catalyst in and play an instrumental role in empowering local communities. In the last 5 years, we supported emerging Somali, Yemeni and Syrian Diaspora NGOs.
An example can be seen in the different processes that were involved to address the famine and drought in Somalia in 2011. The Humanitarian Forum immediately convened meetings on an international level to ascertain the situation on the ground and to share information across a variety of multilateral organizations including NGOs and government departments. These meetings brokered different solutions to issues such as access and working on the ground and engaging international NGOs with local partners in Somalia to facilitate this. Furthermore, these discussions led to organizations from across the world submitting recommendations to bodies including the United Nations. This work carried over into several international conferences on the famine in Somalia and led to the foundation of two organisations that went on to support the country long term – the Somali Relief and Development Forum, a UK-based conglomerate of Somali NGOs running sustainable development health and education projects; and the Somali Humanitarian Operational Consortium, a local group in Somalia made up of local actors and groups to develop their skills and knowledge base so that they can act in any future crises.