Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Week 2019 (HNPW)

HLA’s CEO, George Fenton, represented HLA at the Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Week 2019, which is co-chaired by OCHA and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). It is the largest humanitarian event of its kind, gathering participants from the UN, NGOs, Member States, the private sector, the military, academia and other entities to discuss and solve common challenges in humanitarian affairs.

The HNPW was held at the International Conference Centre (CICG) in Geneva from 4-8 February 2019. More than 25 Networks and Partnerships held their annual meetings during the week. An Inter-Network Day on 6 February offered participants from all organisations and sectors the opportunity to exchange knowledge and network with one another. Over 2,400 participants were registered and it proved to be an excellent event for HLA to attend.

Apart from our brief summary, you can find HNPW’s own summary here.

Highlights of sessions/meetings attended

Airports, critical hubs during emergency response

George Fenton was invited to be a panellist and speaker at a meeting convened by the OCHA Focus Task Force on ‘Airport Efficiency for an Effective Response’, to develop a collective approach and tools to improve coordination between humanitarian actors, airport authorities and civil aviation authorities. Other panellists included the UN’s Under-Secretary General and Deputy Relief Coordinator, representatives from the aviation sector (IATA, ICAO and Airports Council International), airlines, the private sector (DHL), global customs organisations, military (Bangladesh) and the Logistics Cluster.

George Fenton highlighted the need to improve knowledge- sharing and good practice between different entities and to support local capacity building initiatives that can lead to the better management of humanitarian logistics interventions.

Connecting Business initiatives (CBI)

HLA attended as an observer. The CBI is an initiative started some years ago by OCHA to strengthen engagement between the humanitarian and private sectors.

Emergency supplies pre-positioning strategy (ESUPS) annual meeting

HLA attended as an observer. ESUPS was started by OCHA with the Logistics Cluster. The project is part-funded by USAID and hosted by Welthungerhilfe.

GF commented that ESUPS should support the UNHRD to improve its approach to coordinating, among international aid organisations, the stockpiling of relief items in global locations. He felt the approach so far has missed opportunities to leverage efficiencies.

Models to inspire effective humanitarian collaboration

HLA attended as an observer. The meeting contained useful and interesting presentations from various businesses, such as Airbus Foundation, that have successfully engaged with the aid sector.

Energising collaboration on joint humanitarian solutions,

HLA participated as a co-facilitator to support group discussion, based on the previous session.


Together with RedR, George Fenton met with the Sphere Standards Advocacy and Networking Manager to discuss collaboration and final endorsement of the HumLog Companion Guide project. He obtained valuable support and advice on next steps, as well as guidance on digital authoring.

He also held a series of meetings with the Logistics Cluster, Fleet Forum and a number of NGOs, to share plans regarding the HumLog Companion Guide project.

All were supportive of HLA’s initiative and wish to participate, as appropriate. Some suggest a pre-project survey would be useful to help to define the scope of the project and final Guide.

Global Alliance for Urban Crises (GAUC)

HLA attended session as an observer to learn about the potential for urban humanitarian logistics.