A woman listens to a transistor radio

Saving Lives with Information: Internews and ICRC formalize collaboration

September 5, 2018

Internews and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have signed a new Memorandum of Understanding to foster future collaborations that meet the information and communication needs of people affected by conflict and violence.

Accurate, relevant information is increasingly recognized as fundamental to saving lives in times of conflict. To be able to tackle this issue of common interest, Internews and the ICRC have signed an MoU that builds on several years of joint projects and initiatives.

The MoU aims at institutionalizing an ongoing partnership to facilitate the design and functioning of future projects between the organizations. It outlines a number of areas of collaboration, particularly revolving around community engagement and accountability. By engaging communities about aid services and basic rights and entitlements, the ICRC seeks to empower people affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence to take an active role in their own preparedness, relief and recovery. Internews shares this effort by ensuring access to trusted, quality information that allows people to actively participate in their social and civic life.

Together, Internews and the ICRC have agreed to collaborate to strengthen and ensure a broader and more inclusive partnership and collaboration both at global and local levels.

Anahi Ayala Iacucci, Internews Senior Director for Humanitarian Programs, said:

“Communication with communities is a legal and moral obligation. The right to information and expression is well-established and enshrined in international human rights law. By upholding the right to information, humanitarian actors ensure that people are treated with dignity and respect, that they know their options, and that they can make informed decisions. Internews has been working in this field for the past 30 years and we see this partnership as the natural outcome of our long-standing collaboration with ICRC. We are looking forward to creating more robust and sustainable synergies that will bring both organizations closer to their beneficiaries.”

Jennifer Hauseman, ICRC Director of Communication, said:

“Today's humanitarian challenges are immense and complex, and to navigate them effectively we need continual and varied connection to the people at the heart of our work. These partnerships are a powerful and logical step in this direction, with the ever-growing objective to empower people when it comes to the humanitarian decisions that affect them. Having worked with Internews in the past, we know that they share this objective and are uniquely suited to bring it forth. We are glad to develop this partnership into a long-term collaboration to further benefit the people the ICRC serves.”

About the partner organisations

The ICRC helps people around the world affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence, doing everything possible to protect their dignity and relieve their suffering, often together with its Red Cross and Red Crescent partners. The ICRC also seeks to prevent hardship by promoting and strengthening humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles.

Internews works to ensure access to trusted, quality information that empowers people to have a voice in their future. For close to 35 years and in more than 100 countries, Internews has worked with local partners to build hundreds of sustainable organizations, strengthened the capacity of thousands of media professionals working in emergency contexts, and reached millions of people with quality, local information to allow them to protect themselves and their families, and to hold humanitarian organizations accountable.

(Banner photo: A woman in South Sudan listens to local news via transistor radio. The understanding that news and two-way information with affected communities are a vital part of humanitarian response fuels a new collaboration between Internews and The ICRC. Photo credit: Internews)