How community-led innovation can challenge inequity and contribute to the decolonisation of humanitarian aid
Against the backdrop of global protests over racism and inequity, the humanitarian and development sector is facing a reckoning about its deep roots in colonisation and racism. How the sector approaches transferring power to, and building genuine partnerships with, national, subnational, and community organisations is an important consideration as organizations work to address issues of inequity and power imbalances. In humanitarian aid, community led innovation is also a growing focus. The objective of this panel is to explore evidence and experience of decolonising aid through community-led innovation from a multi-stakeholder perspective. The panel will include experiences of the Start Network, Elrha, and partners working in this area, bringing global and community perspectives together to look at the role of communities as humanitarians. Together the group will explore the role innovation may play in transforming humanitarian aid to be more community-led and contextually relevant; delving into the barriers and enablers based on experience and evidence. They will look at how the role of communities in humanitarian aid can be reconceptualised through innovation to build more acceptable and effective solutions; specifically exploring how to shift power and build genuine partnerships. Finally, they will explore concrete recommendations and next steps that the humanitarian sector can take in this direction at both a global and community level.