World Humanitarian Summit: Is the Humanitarian System Fit for the Future?

Action Against Hunger International sends delegation of humanitarian experts to Istanbul to commit to the Agenda for Humanity

Editor's Note: A post-Summit update. Below find links to see Action Against Hunger CEO Andrea Tamburini participating in these high-level events:


The first-ever World Humanitarian Summit, happening May 23-24 in Istanbul, is a global call to action by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The Summit has three main goals:

  1. To re-inspire and reinvigorate a commitment to humanity and to the universality of humanitarian principles;
  2. To initiate a set of concrete actions and commitments aimed at enabling countries and communities to better prepare for and respond to crises, and be resilient to shocks; and
  3. To share best practices which can help save lives around the world, put affected people at the center of humanitarian action, and alleviate suffering.

What will happen at the Summit?

In 2015, the world agreed, through the Sustainable Development Goals, to "leave no one behind." At the World Humanitarian Summit, global leaders have the opportunity to announce major commitments to action, launch new partnerships aimed at saving lives, and highlight innovations that will help reduce suffering and uphold humanity in times of crisis.

Learn more about the World Humanitarian Summit's Agenda for Humanity, as outlined by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, in his report on the Summit.

Events at the Summit include:

  • High-level Leader's Roundtables, special sessions, and interactive sessions to advance commitments to action around key issues.
  • An innovation marketplace featuring impactful innovations which demonstrate practical applications, new or improved products, services and processes which improve humanitarian action.
  • High-level side events on key issues organized by humanitarian organizations and other stakeholders.

Who is attending?

At the Summit, Heads of State and Government, community leaders, businesses, and leaders of humanitarian organizations will gather to announce commitments for millions of people who are vulnerable to conflicts and disasters. 

Action Against Hunger's commitments to the Agenda for Humanity

Action Against Hunger International is sending a delegation of six humanitarian experts to the World Humanitarian Summit. Action Against Hunger USA's CEO, Andrea Tamburini, will be the lead organizational spokesperson at the World Humanitarian Summit, participating in three of the seven High-Level Leaders Round Tables; speaking at the opening plenary session; and appearing as a panelist at two high-level side events. Tamurinini will also announce Action Against Hunger's commitments to the Agenda for Humanity, outlined below.

Upholding the norms that safeguard humanity 

  1. ACF International will actively pursue within the year ahead the creation of a Special Procedure for the protection of aid workers, dedicated to advancing efforts to respect and protect the humanitarian mission against attacks, threats or other violent acts that prevent it from fulfilling its exclusively humanitarian function, and to fight impunity;
  2. ACF International will ensure the creation of an externally-managed central database for the collection and analysis of serious attacks against aid workers, and call for the systematic condemnation at the UN Security Council of attacks on humanitarian actors or assets that lead to important restrictions on access to populations in urgent need of relief;
  3. ACF International will reinforce respect and understanding for the humanitarian principles through the chanelling of donor funds - and adapting our organizational strategic plans - to support training on the principles and legal frameworks for all ACF staff, as well as sensitizing local communities and relevant actors present in the field.

Managing risks and crises differently

  1. ACF International will promote and demand a fully integrated approach to preparing, reducing and managing natural disasters and climate change risks by adequate field activities targeting the most vulnerable to ensure humanitarian and development goals are intertwined

Changing people’s lives: From delivering aid to ending need 

  1. Every ACF International country strategy will, for the next 5 years, include structural support measures including multi-sectoral risk management, local capacities reinforcement and emergency response for the overarching goal of building resilience to manage risk rather than crises.
  2. ACF International programs in high-burden countries will, for the next 5 years, produce and implement a risk management policy and secure support from donors for flexible and predictable resources.
  3. As a member of the Cash Learning Partnership (CaLP), Action Against Hunger, commits to work with states, humanitarian and development agencies and the private sector to build consensus, capacity, resources and commitment to scale up multipurpose humanitarian cash transfers in line with the calls to action laid out in the CaLP Agenda for Cash.

In addition to our own commitments, we are a signatory to the U.S. NGO Commitments to the World Humanitarian Summitpublished by the U.S. NGO alliance, InterAction.   

Action Against Hunger is also hosting a side event on "How Can the Humanitarian System Become Fit for the Future?" on May 23rd, with partners Save the Children, Humanitarian Policy Group, Tufts University Feinstein International Center, and King's College London.

Learn more:

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About Action Against Hunger USA

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Action Against Hunger is a global humanitarian organization that takes decisive action against the causes and effects of hunger. We save the lives of malnourished children. We ensure families can access clean water, food, training, and health care. We enable entire communities to be free from hunger.