FAO's work in emergencies is almost exclusively funded from extra-budgetary resources provided by member countries and intergovernmental organizations (such as the European Union, international financial institutions or other United Nations agencies).
FAO solicits funding on behalf of affected countries mainly through the inter-agency Global Humanitarian Appeal and other emergency or flash appeals as well as strategic and thematic response plans.
In 2016, FAO’s emergency programme exceeded USD 300 million, with contributions from over 40 resource partners, including 22 FAO member countries and the European Union, as well as numerous pool funding mechanisms such as the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), and other UN Trust Funds at country level.
FAO’s main resource partners for emergency activities in 2016 were (in order of importance): the United States of America, the United Kingdom, the European Union, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Canada, the Netherlands, Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Japan, Germany, and UN trust funds at country level, of which the main one is The Common Fund for Humanitarian Action in Sudan.
Total contributions for 2016: USD 326 million (preliminary figures)
Guide to giving
Resource partners contribute to FAO’s emergency activities through the following funding modalities:
1. Strategic and Thematic Response Plans
The most recent plans are:
2. Special Fund for Emergency and Rehabilitation Activities
The Special Fund for Emergency and Rehabilitation Activities (SFERA) provides FAO with the financial means and flexibility to react promptly to humanitarian crises, reducing the time between a funding decision and action on the ground. Resource partners can choose to:
- Unearmarked support to SFERA’s revolving fund, which FAO can rapidly and flexibly allocate for needs assessments, programme formulation, preparedness and Level 3 emergency response;
- Provide funding to SFERA’s Agricultural Inputs Response Capacity for the urgent distribution of farming, livestock, fisheries and forestry supplies required to protect or restart agricultural production;
- Allocate grants to SFERA’s programme fund in support of large-scale FAO programmes in response to shocks such as conflicts, typhoons, drought, locust outbreaks and avian influenza pandemics;
- Contribute to SFERA’s Early Action Window, which enables FAO to work with national governments and civil society to anticipate natural disasters, including climatic anomalies, pest and disease outbreaks and complex emergencies through early actions that prevent an unfolding disaster from happening; mitigate the impacts of an anticipated event; or strengthen emergency response capabilities for a specific, imminent threat through targeted preparedness investments.
3. Programmatic Agreements
Resource partners or financing institutions entrust funds to FAO through an umbrella agreement to assist crises-affected countries or a group of countries. Programmatic agreements reduce administrative workload for all parties and ensures fast-track implementation of essential activities. Examples include:
- United States Agency for International Development Global Grant for the Control and Prevention of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza and other Pandemic Threats;
- Office of the United States Foreign Disaster Assistance Macrogrant;
- Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency Macrogrant.
4. Partnership Agreements
FAO has several agreements with stand-by partners which manage and operate large rosters of humanitarian personnel to be deployed to United Nations agencies on an in-kind basis. Through stand-by partnerships, FAO is able to quickly reinforce its country teams in response to complex emergencies. Stand-by partners also cover other functions not readily available in FAO, such as logistics or monitoring and evaluation. FAO’s stand-by partners include:
- Canada’s Civilian Reserve;
- Danish Refugee Council;
- Department for International Development of the United Kingdom;
- Internet and Mobile Marketing Association of the Philippines;
- Norwegian Refugee Council;
- RedR Australia.