Philanthropy supports Ukrainians to lead in response to ongoing humanitarian crisis

Wed, 21 Dec 2022

The Centre of Humanitarian Leadership will deliver humanitarian leadership training to Ukrainians coping with the ongoing Russian invasion, thanks to approximately $1.1 million in funding from the Centre for Disaster Philanthropy.

The grant will enable CHL to deliver its flagship Crisis Leadership Program to local Ukrainian leaders, equipping them with the skills they need to guide their communities through the crisis.

Through the program local leaders will learn how to ensure that their response to humanitarian disasters is appropriate, equitable and inclusive.

The training will be delivered through a combination of online learning, in-person workshops and synchronous live sessions.

Deakin Arts and Education Faculty Acting Dean Associate Professor Meghan Kelly welcomed the funding, which marks a first-time collaboration between CHL and CDP.

“This grant has enabled the Centre for Humanitarian Leadership to expand its program to better assist those who need it most – including people living in Ukraine,” she said

CHL Acting Director Josh Hallwright said that the feedback past graduates have shared with the centre has been overwhelmingly positive.

“Participants have highlighted how they are now more confident in navigating the international humanitarian system as well as being able to advocate for the changes they want to see in how humanitarian assistance is provided in their country,” he said.

The grant will also allow CHL to further develop the leadership program by funding the co-design of an additional unit, called ‘Extend’ as well as further refining the two existing modules. The existing modules, ‘Seed’ and ‘Grow’ will also be translated into local languages.

CHL will also increase the impact of the program by delivering a ‘Training the Trainers’ program, which will ensure that local leaders can deliver the ‘Seed’ module to their own communities in their own languages.

Along with the funding of the leadership training, the grant will enable CHL to partner with academic institutions in Poland and Ukraine to explore the impact of crisis development leadership on the participants’ ability to engage with a humanitarian system at the international level.

Alex Gray, Director of International Funds at CDP, said that local humanitarian leadership in central to ensuring the most relevant preparedness and equitable long-term recovery for crisis-affected communities.

“The global humanitarian system is at a critical inflection point and historical power imbalances need to shift, with more power and resources placed in the hands of the local communities who are impacted by a crisis,” he said.

“This starts with investing in local humanitarian leadership, and the Crisis Leadership Program does just that.”

A group of around 20 people stand in an informal semi-circle, listening to a presenter
The first round of the Crisis Leadership Program took place in Krakow, Poland in December.