What is independent verification?
Independent verification is a four-year cycle and is open to CHS Alliance members and non-members. The process involves document reviews, interviews with key staff, partners and communities and people affected by crisis, other stakeholders (partners, donors etc.) and direct observation at selected project sites. The aim is to generate a comprehensive analysis of an organisation’s degree of application of the CHS, a work plan (developed by the organisation itself) for improvement and the objective evidence of the organisation’s progress against this work plan. This is carried out by an independent third party that has no affiliation with the CHS Alliance. CHS Alliance members can fulfill their membership requirement by submitting the public summary of their reports to the CHS Alliance.
What is the process of independent verification?
- Year 0: A baseline assessment undertaken by a third party e.g. the Humanitarian Quality Assurance Initiative (HQAI), leading to a confidential report of strength and weakness in the application of the CHS and a public summary of this report.
- The development of a work plan by the organisation to address all the major weaknesses within four years.
- The application of the work plan.
- Year 1: A self-assessment and reporting after one year of implementation of the work plan, validated by an independent third party e.g. HQAI.
- Year 2: A third-party assessment and report after two years of implementation of the work plan. This can lead to a revision of the work plan if it is found that, for any reason, it is not delivering the expected results.
- Year 3: Similar to 4, a self-assessment and report after three years of implementation of the work plan.
- A third-party assessment to check the status of 0 score after four years of implementation of the work plan;
- In exceptional circumstances the organisation may be granted a two-year extension.
- The cycle continues, from point 2 and onwards.
How much does independent verification cost?
The cost of independent verification is determined by the independent organisation carrying out the audit. For more information on this, please contact HQAI. For organisations that wish to undergo independent verification or certification and require financial support, a fund has been established for this purpose – please contact HQAI for further information.