ICVA Annual Conference 25 and 26 May 2021

Climate, environment and humanitarian action: How can NGOs mitigate and adapt?






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Previous Editions

Conference, MeetingPast Event
18 March, 2020

ICVA Annual Conference 2020

Subject / ICVA / Financing /
The ICVA 2020 Annual Conference took the form of three webinar sessions organised in collaboration with PHAP. The conference  showed that we, as a sector, are agile. We continue delivering to our mandate while complying with the duty of care…
Conference, MeetingPast Event
26 March, 2019

ICVA Annual Conference 2019

Subject / ICVA / World Humanitarian Summit / Global compact on refugees /
The current environment in which NGOs and other humanitarian actors operate is fundamentally changing. In many parts of the world where humanitarians are working, respect for humanitarian principles is eroding and so too is the NGOs space to operate. The…

ICVA’s 2021 Annual Conference focused on the role that NGOs play in adapting the way we work to be better prepared to climate and environment change so that we leave no one behind. Especially in the humanitarian context when delivering programmes to support refugees, displaced and vulnerable populations.


Each year, ICVA holds an Annual Conference, which provides an important opportunity for members to connect and discuss issues relevant to the humanitarian sector, as informed by ICVA’s membership base. On 25 and 26 May 2021 ICVA hosted its second virtual annual conference on the theme: Climate, environment and humanitarian action: How can NGOs mitigate and adapt?

During ICVA’s 2030 strategy consultations, members and partners highlighted the importance of the intersection between climate and environment change and humanitarian action. The changes taking place are not only threatening humanity and our environment as we know it, but it is also faster and more radical than expected.


The conference brought together ICVA members, NGOs, NGO fora, States, donors, UN agencies, experts and other climate and environment sector stakeholders to share their experiences, lessons learned, challenges and ways forward around these issues.

New alliances will be required to work outside existing silos and we will creatively explore how the humanitarian, development and climate communities can work together to shape policy, increase resilience, improve practice, and secure resourcing for climate related humanitarian crises and organisational changes.

The conference aimed to:

  • Increase awareness on the challenging contexts under which NGOs already are and will have to operate
  • Enable members and partners to share and learn from each other
  • Create opportunities for exchange and dialogue between ICVA members, NGOs and other actors in the humanitarian and climate/environment sectors on how to mitigate challenges, be prepared and support NGOs to deliver in the future
  • Identify where more collective action and evidence is required, building on partners and membership strengths
Meeting materials
13 August 2021
ICVA 2021 Annual Conference Report
Subject/ ICVA / Environment /
Meeting materials
13 April 2021
ICVA 2021 Annual Conference Agenda
Subject/ ICVA / Environment /
Meeting materials
13 April 2021
ICVA 2021 Annual Conference Concept note
Subject/ ICVA / Environment /
Session 1

Scene! Setting the scene: the intersection of climate-environment-humanitarian Framing of the challenges and opportunities

This session framed the Annual Conference discussions to analyse and better understand the intersection between humanitarian-climate and environment action bringing perspectives from a variety of actors on the issues, challenges and some of the ways forward on policy and practice.


  • Mr. Paul Knox Clarke, Principal, Climate and Humanitarian Crisis Initiative



  • Mr. Solomon Bhaghabhonerano, Founder and Executive Director, Live in Green Live in Wealth Youth Initiative and Representative of the Global Refugee Youth Network (GRYN)
  • Dr. Sinead Walsh, Ireland’s Climate Envoy
  • Ms. Tasneem Essop, Executive Director, Climate Action Network International (CAN-I)
  • Ms. Magnhild Vasset, Executive Director Field Operations Department, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)


Session 1 recording

Session 2

Lights! Showcasing initiatives: A dynamic World Café session

This session spotlighted and showcased 10 ongoing initiatives that are supporting organisations on climate and environment concerns in humanitarian action. Each session looked at best practices, guidance, tools etc.  to support NGOs and partners to mitigate and adapt in order to overcome some of the challenges faced in the sector.

  • The Climate and Environment Charter for humanitarian organisations: From words to action
  • The Nexus environmental assessment tool
  • Communication that works: Humanitarians and the climate crisis
  • Life cycle analysis as a tool in greening humanitarian assistance
  • Enhancing the evidence base on planned relocation as a strategy for climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction
  • Community strengthening through anticipatory action: The Anticipation Hub and humanitarian mapping
  • Thinking Beyond Response: Tearfund’s approach to environmental and economic sustainability in humanitarian work
  • Medair early warning system and DRR in Madagascar
  • Pathways to resilience: innovative approaches to integrate resilience and climate adaptation bridging humanitarian and development agendas
  • How to address climate change and environmental degradation in EU’s humanitarian action: what the new communication says
World Café sessions recordings

Session 3

Camera! Zoom-in from global to local

This session focused on the localization and funding linkages when working in climate-environment-humanitarian contexts. There were discussion around what action and change is required from NGOs, donors and partners alike to share risks to mitigate and adapt the way we work.

Keynote address: Mr. Jagan Chapagain, Secretary General, International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)


  • Ms. Soraia Sadat, Project Manager, Women’s Activities & Social Services Association, Herat, Afghanistan
  • Mr. Amadou Diallo, Disaster Risk Financing Regional Coordinator, Africa, START Network
  • Ms. Praneeta Kapur, Country Advisor, American Jewish World Service (AJWS), India
  • Ms. Tiziana Bonzon, Manager, Climate, Migration and Resilience Disasters, Climate and Crises Department, IFRC

Moderator: Ms. Stephanie Yousef, MENA Deputy Regional Representative, ICVA

Session 3 recording

Session 4

Action! Towards collective and collaborative change

This session looked at how different sectors could work together to mobilise collective and collaborative action addressing the impact of climate and environment change on humanitarian action.


Moderator: Mr. Ignacio Packer, Executive Director, ICVA


  • Ms. Adelina Kamal, Executive Director of the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance (AHA Centre)
  • Mr. Robert Mardini, Director-General, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
  • Mr. Ilkka Salmi, Director of the Disaster Preparedness and Prevention Directorate, European Commission, Belgium
  • Mr. Pallawish Kumar, Founder and CEO of Youth 4 Climate Action Projects & Youth Advocate for UNESCAP, EU Climate pact Ambassador and YOUNGO Representative
  • Ms. Jane Backhurst, Christian Aid and ICVA Chair


Session 4 recording