Monday, 24 March 2014

Certification Review Project: Phase Two – Pilot testing

In middle of February, a two-person team travelled to Ethiopia to spend several days with the first of the project’s pilot host organisations, the Development and Inter Church Aid Commission of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, (DICAC). The project field research is designed to help us understand the practical implications of certification for organisations, how it could potentially reinforce their own quality and accountability systems and generate more information on how certification can contribute (or not) to improving humanitarian action.

The team’s purpose in their research was to test and validate the draft certification model’s key assumption that external reporting, verification and certification can contribute to improved quality, effectiveness and accountability of humanitarian actions.

The team wanted to:
-        -  identify how participating organisations and their stakeholders understand, apply, measure and promote humanitarian principles, quality and accountability in their humanitarian work;
-       -   determine how relevant and appropriate the proposed model, core requirements and indicators might be to supporting those efforts and how this could be aligned to other, external processes;
-        -  understand the practical implications, risks, costs and benefits of certification for different humanitarian NGOs and their stakeholders, and finally;
-        -  assess the feasibility, relevance and added value of different options around the most appropriate model and approach to take for certification.

The Ethiopia visit was completely successfully, with the team working closely with DICAC staff and other key stakeholders and partners in the country, including other NGOs, UN agencies, donors, key government department representatives and several groups of affected communities and representatives. The report is now complete and can be found with the other project documents.

We would like to thank all of the DICAC staff across the organisation for all of their time assisting us and their positive engagement with the project and our research. 

 Please note: we are still seeking an organisation to volunteer for a fourth pilot study. Costs will be covered by the project, and time in country would be approximately 10 days. If your organisation is interested in volunteering, please get in touch urgently!