Workshop on Humanitarian Principles and Code of Conduct

Workshop on Humanitarian Principles and Code of Conduct

On 2-3 September 2015, the ICRC in collaboration with the International Council of Voluntary Agencies (ICVA) and Humanitarian Forum Indonesia (HFI) conducted two day workshop on Humanitarian Principles and Code of Conduct at the Salak Hotel, Bogor, West Java. The workshop was attended by no less than 54 representatives from diverse faith-based and non-religious humanitarian organizations, including high-level representatives. High quality presentations by the principle speakers generated lively and fruitful discussions which made the event a resounding success.

The ICRC and ICVA have already collaborated on similar humanitarian affairs workshops in London, Sana’a, Amman and Dakar with support from the HFI, the Muslim Charities Forum and Islamic Relief. This was the second time that the ICRC has arranged such an event in Indonesia, following on from a more modest one-day event organized in collaboration with Dompet Dhuafa, HFI and ICVA in November last year.

On this occasion, almost all major faith-based (Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Confucian) and non-religious humanitarian organizations in Indonesia attended, including Buddha Tzu Chi and Majelis Buddhayana Indonesia (Buddhist), Majelis Tinggi Agama Konghuchu or MATAKIN (Confucian), Yayasan Abdhi Dharma Indonesia (Hindu), Medical Emergency Rescue Committee (MER-C), the Saudi-based World Assembly of Muslim Youth or WAMY, and Aliansi Masyarakat Adat Indonesia (AMAN, representing indigenous peoples).

Much of the first day and a half focused on the secular and religious values and motivations underpinning humanitarian action and how these were translated into practice, comparing the mission statements, principles and codes of conduct of various organisations, and the Code of Conduct for the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and NGOs. The implications of the rapidly evolving humanitarian landscape, particularly the increasing importance of local/national and faith-based organisations, were also explored.

On the second day, more time was spent discussing the main challenges facing humanitarian organisations- concerning access, security, coordination and funding- and how best they might be tackled.

Many participants, a number of whom had never participated in such an event, committed themselves to joining future events, and some advocated the forming of a working group to follow up, with an eye on the upcoming World Humanitarian Summit in Turkey.

Participants had provided some information on the Mission Statements, philosophies, theological underpinnings, principles and codes of conduct of their respective organisations prior to the event.

The event was primarily in Bahasa Indonesia, with some presentations in English.