Collective Communication and Community Engagement in Humanitarian Action

Publication language
Date published
20 Feb 2019
How-to / Tutorial / Tips
Accountability and Participation
CDAC Network

A guide to implementing communication. community engagement and accountability programming in humanitarian action, bringing together a decade of best practice.


It is well recognised that good communication and participation are prerequisites for successful community engagement in development and humanitarian action. We need more sustained dialogue and meaningful interaction with the people we serve so that they can take informed decisions and play an active or lead role in the aid they receive. So how do we get better at working alongside people affected by disaster? How do we build communication channels fit for purpose so the people we serve maintain or regain control of their recovery and the aid they receive? While coordination between organisations is vital, deeper collaboration around common goals is needed to reduce the burden of the aid industry on affected communities. This guide puts the spotlight on collective ways of working through locally-led communication and community engagement platforms to enable more systematic efforts across an emergency response. We offer practical guidance to embed communication and community engagement in emergency response and broader aid efforts, enabling leaders and frontline responders to communicate and engage effectively with people affected by disaster. Marian Casey-Maslen, Executive Director, CDAC Network