Humanitarian Assistance

From natural disasters to armed conflicts, Global Communities provides humanitarian assistance to people in need. We partner with affected communities to provide immediate relief in ways that enable communities to quickly recover, build back more safely, and restart livelihoods sooner. In the process of providing immediate assistance, Global Communities aims to develop innovative programs that lay the foundation for long-term recovery. This approach, along with our commitment to developing the capacity of our local staff and organizational partners, sets us apart in the humanitarian sphere. Our assistance focuses on restarting livelihoods, increasing access to financial services, rebuilding homes and neighborhoods, and providing psychosocial support to help families recover from the trauma of disaster and conflict. Our work focuses on four main areas:

Shelter and Settlements

Global Communities is a recognized international leader in providing shelter and housing to disaster and conflict-affected families. Following disasters, Global Communities supports families living in a variety of contexts – rented apartments, with relatives or host families, or in their own house which they rebuild one room at a time. We are also widely known for our work in transitional shelter or t-shelters. Our transitional shelters are durable temporary homes that meet global standards and enable a family to live and thrive during the phase between tents and tarpaulins in the immediate aftermath of a disaster and permanent, fully constructed housing.

Food Security and Livelihoods

Rebuilding livelihoods and restarting economic activity is a critical component for disaster-affected families as they restart their lives. Without support for livelihoods or widespread economic recovery, the economy of a community remains reliant on handouts and can stagnate for years following a disaster. Helping families rebuild their livelihoods through short-term employment, provision of inputs or assistance to enable individuals to start or resume their own businesses, or longer-term vocational training, enables them to become proactive agents in control of their own recovery process. Our programs are designed to help reduce food aid dependency, improve household nutrition and food availability, and provide income. Our humanitarian response is anchored by a resilience-focused, community-led methodology that both addresses immediate, life-saving needs during an emergency, and builds household and community resiliency to mitigate shocks in order to recover and ensure sustainable livelihoods. Our programs seek to link food security to other complementary interventions such as access to clean water, increased income, and adequate shelter whenever possible, fostering self-sustainable early recovery.


Protecting the most vulnerable, particularly women and children, is a critical component of humanitarian assistance. Global Communities’ protection programs mitigate the risks of violence, exploitation, abuse and neglect of those affected by conflict or disaster, including refugees and internally displaced persons. Our comprehensive programs are designed to both diminish protection risks and respond to protection violations with critically needed services. With a focus on Child Protection and preventing and responding to gender-based violence, Global Communities delivers comprehensive protection support through both static and mobile facilities.

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene

Water is essential for a range of day-to-day human needs, including consumption, hygiene and irrigation. In developing countries, where clean water may already be scarce, conflicts or natural disasters can devastate water and sanitation infrastructure and reduce people’s abilities to access this key resource. As a result, contaminated water and poor quality sanitation services can increase the prevalence of diseases and deteriorate hygiene and productivity. Global Communities’ humanitarian Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) programs are designed to provide immediate access to clean water and sanitation facilities and services while improving hygiene practices and laying the groundwork for longer-term, sustainable WASH solutions.

Cross-Cutting Themes

We incorporate risk reduction into all our programs to help build safer, more resilient communities. Changes in climate, population growth, and environmental degradation will lead to more and increasingly destructive disasters in the future. By helping communities prepare for these disasters now, through focusing on issues like food security and safe construction, we empower them to better cope and rebuild when the next disaster comes. Additionally, Global Communities is an international leader in 21st century urban disaster response, such as in Haiti or Gaza, and continues to develop programs that address an urban environment.