Paper: Exploring funding solutions for locally led humanitarian responses in Myanmar

Paper details

Paper authors Sophie Ford
In panel on Money Talks. Exploring Funding Solutions for Localized Humanitarian Response
Paper presenter(s) will be presenting In-Person / Online


As part of a global commitment to evaluating and improving the ways of working in the humanitarian sector, Oxfam is working towards increasing meaningful support to local actors to take a lead role in humanitarian work. The international community have made a series of strategic policy commitments, such as the Grand Bargain , the Charter for Change and New ways of Working . This shifting of power necessitates not only a move towards more funding for local organisations, but a realisation of the different roles, skills and experiences brought by local actors.
In Kachin State in Myanmar, a 17-year-long ceasefire between the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and the Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmadaw) broke down in 2011. Armed conflict, which re-started in June 2011, has since caused the displacement of over 100,000 people and the figure continues to increase . This has resulted in a large scale humanitarian operation involving both international and national actors. The humanitarian response has also enabled the growth of strong individual LNGOs who have taken on a leading role in the response. In this context, Oxfam is piloting a new rapid response mechanism which aims to address key funding gaps and ensure quick access to funding for local responders. The mechanism has been activated three times in 2018 to respond to new displacements as a result of intensified fighting between the intensified armed clashes and new displacements of civilians.
In this paper, Oxfam will share the successes and challenges of this new funding solutions and reflect on wat the opportunities and barriers may be to replicate this mechanism in the context of highly politicized and protracted humanitarian crises in Myanmar. These initiatives could be paving the way for a new aid financing architecture, and as a result, shifting power dynamics within the existing humanitarian system and strengthening the role and the decision making of local actors in humanitarian responses.



Sophie Ford
Oxfam Myanmar