Goal 2

Champion a localisation movement


For GNDR, localisation does not solely focus on channelling humanitarian assistance funds to local actors. It refers to structural changes at the local, national and international level, where local actors (local authorities, CSOs, small businesses, communities most at risk) have the capacity, resources and power they need to decide how to strengthen their own resilience.

Sustainable development cannot be achieved without local level leadership.

Local communities most at risk must be enabled to participate, influence and take decisions on risk-informed development policies and practices because they are the people most at risk. They have critical knowledge and experience of the threats they face and their consequences, the actions which help to reduce risk and barriers to those actions.

For GNDR members working at the frontline of disaster risk, the idea of localisation is a revolutionary approach that turns traditional hierarchical global thinking on its head.

Localisation means:

  • Strengthening the capacity of local communities most at risk in terms of knowledge and skills
  • Establishing effective systems and procedures in terms of governance and accountable management practice
  • Supporting an enabling policy environment of the national/sub-national governments, donor agencies, INGOs and private sector
  • Ensuring there are linkages among local actors at the horizontal level and across the local, national, and international levels, to engage, influence, implement and enforce accountability
  • Transferring financial resources so that actions match words.

A localisation movement connects local communities in all countries around the world and amplifies their voices at the relevant national and international levels.

It emphasises upholding the human rights of people most at risk and recognises that there is knowledge, expertise and commitment at all levels, but local communities most at risk and frontline organisations must have space to influence, access to resources and the power to take decisions.

A localisation movement with these characteristics is needed to make the transformative change that is required for a world in which people most at risk are able to prevent hazards becoming disasters.

Achieving our goal



  • Governments and INGOs believe local CSOs should lead.

Indicators of Success

  • Increase in government and INGO understanding of the benefits of localisation, as measured by Partner Survey.
  • Number of government policies with reference to local evidence on risk, as measured by policy analysis.


  • Establish a Campaign for Local Leadership which will include the social and financial benefits of local actors leading.
  • Profile innovative work of CSOs on GNDR website in a Spotlight Series.
  • Hold Evidence Festivals showcasing the vast range of local data and stories local actors hold.



  • Local CSOs have capacity to lead and be accountable to communities most at risk.

Indicators of Success

  • Increase in the capacity of CSOs to lead (financial management, project management, gender mainstreaming, representation skills), as measured by the annual membership survey.


  • Organise roundtables with donors and local CSOs to understand the capacities they want to see in local organisations and realities on the ground.
  • Assess and strengthen institutional capacities of CSOs, including around how to access and manage grants, donor reporting, and gender mainstreaming. This may be through trainings, webinars, and mentorships, and will necessitate mobilising and exchanging existing capacities across the members and partners.
  • Run local action planning workshops and seek funds to support community actors analyse evidence and design small projects.



  • The enabling environment for local CSOs to lead exists.

Indicators of Success

  • Increase in awareness by donors of individual local CSOs and their work, as measured by Partner Survey.
  • Number of donors revising reporting requirements to make it easier for local organisations, as measured by Partner Survey.
  • Number of government policies outlining clear roles of local actors, as measured by policy analysis.


  • Create a Member Match programme to promote spaces for local actors and global actors to meet at online and face-to-face connection events.
  • Increase visibility of members and their work through social media, Spotlight series, and stronger branding as GNDR.
  • Design advocacy initiative calling for simplified reporting requirements from donors, and policies to outline roles and responsibilities of local actors.




  • Global and national actors are accountable for localisation.

Indicator of Success

  • Number of people accessing localisation monitors, as measured by Google Analytics.


  • Monitor inclusion of local actors through our Views from the Frontline programme.


What will success look like?

Increase in local actors receiving funds and decision-making responsibilities from governments and multi-lateral institutions.

How will we measure this?

Quantitative indicators:
  • Increase in % of members from communities most at risk who say they can access resources for DRR
  • Increase in % of local actors who say they have a say in resilience decision-making processes
Qualitative indicator:
  • Stories of collaboration from all GNDR regions
  • Annual membership survey
  • VFL survey conducted at the end of strategy
  • 22% of members from communities most at risk say they can access funds easily, with some limitations, or occasionally (VFL 2019)
  • 16% report being included in assessing threats, preparing policies and plans, and taking action to reduce threats (VFL 2019)


Top photo: A community member in the Dominican Republic. GNDR delivered community-based disaster risk management in the country in 2019. Credit: Diego Alejandro Bravo Majin

Middle photo: Kubaaza Oliver lives with her five children and a sister in Namuwongo, a slum in Kampala, Uganda. She sells food to earn a living. Kubaaza took part in GNDR’s Views from the Frontline programme in 2019. Credit: Jjumba Martin/GNDR

Bottom photo: Rukmani Adikati and her mother-in-law, Bagyvati, shortly before moving to a newly constructed home after the 2015 Nepal earthquake. GNDR Member National Society for Earthquake Technology (NSET) provided training to local masons on how to build earthquake-resistant houses. Credit: Lambert Coleman

Download the full strategy

The full GNDR strategy document is available in PDF format in four languages.

Find out more about the work of our global network by visiting our main website.

Our supporters

This site was made possible due to the generous contributions from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the Swedish International Development Cooperation.

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