IOM works closely with civil society to respond to crises, including with non-governmental organizations (NGOs), the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, academia and research institutions, philanthropic foundations, non-profit media organizations and professional associations.   

 Civil society partnerships are essential to IOM’s crisis-related programming reaching over 28 million people in more than 75 countries in 2019. Collaboration with civil society organizations is key to effectively addressing the mobility dimensions of crises.   

In 2019, over 80 per cent of IOM’s funds to partners were awarded to international and local civil society organizations.  

IOM’s NGO partners bring a unique perspective and expertise to crisis preparedness and response. They provide IOM with invaluable knowledge and information, operational capacity, and assistance in essential advocacy functions. Conversely, IOM contributes to the strengthening of NGOs through joint activities, including capacity strengthening and access to financial resources.  

Institutional Commitment to Partnership

IOM’s institutional humanitarian policy highlights the significance of IOM’s partnerships with local, national, and international non-governmental organizations. It recognizes the unique and important contributions of NGOs and the broader civil society in terms of specialized expertise, geographical access and presence, proximity and knowledge of local community structures.  As a founding member of the Global Humanitarian Platform, IOM has endorsed the Principles of Partnership (PoP) that aim to ensure equality, transparency, result-oriented approaches, responsibility and complementarity across humanitarian partnerships.  

Support to Local and National Crisis Responders

As a signatory of the Grand Bargain, IOM is committed to supporting national and local civil society actors through capacity strengthening and inclusion in international coordination mechanisms.  Local actors are often the first to respond to crises, remaining in the communities they serve before, after and during emergencies.   

In the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, and acknowledging the crucial role that local and national partners play in the response, IOM together with other UN organizations and partners is ensuring harmonization and consistency when it comes to NGO partner arrangements, simplifying procedures and adopting flexible arrangements to ensure NGO partners remain fully able to operate and achieve results for the communities and populations served. As a grant manager, IOM ensures the timely pass-through of CERF funding to NGOs and frontline responders as directly as possible.