Delivering our Commitments: Making the CHS more accessible and relevant for crisis-affected people and communities

2 March 2022

Seven years ago, the Core Humanitarian Standard on Quality and Accountability (CHS) was launched, marking a major milestone for the aid sector. Development of the standard brought together multiple stakeholders, including people and communities affected by crises, to agree on a common set of commitments and good practices to improve the quality, effectiveness and accountability of humanitarian action.

Since then, the CHS has become a key reference in the aid sector. Hundreds of organisations use the CHS to guide and orient their work, and the standard has influenced efforts to strengthen quality and accountability at all levels.

However, the global context has changed significantly since the standard was created. The climate emergency, the COVID-19 pandemic, protection and safeguarding concerns and growing awareness of unequal power dynamics in the aid sector are examples of the need to revise and reaffirm commitments to people and communities that are vulnerable to and affected by crisis.

Launch of the CHS revision process

On 12 May 2022, CHS Alliance, Sphere and Groupe URD will jointly launch a two-year CHS consultation and revision process. As copyright holders of the CHS, the three organisations are committed to an open, transparent and participatory process to ensure all stakeholders can provide their views and feedback on the standard.

The formal launch will be a combined live and online session at the Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Week (HNPW) in Geneva. This will be complemented with two online launch events on 18 May 2022, 9:00 – 10:30 CEST (French, Arabic – tbc) and 16:00 – 17:30 CEST (Spanish) to reach people across the globe and invite them to engage in the process.

Registration links for ‘What should the future Commitments to people affected by crisis be? Launch of the CHS Revision’:

What will the revision cover?

The revision process will prioritise listening to and understanding what vulnerable people and communities need and value. We also want to include the perspectives of community-based and civil society actors working with vulnerable people and communities. At the same time, we want to explore how a revised CHS can support system-wide changes in the aid sector and beyond, building on the achievements and lessons learned so far. This includes wider take-up of the standard by UN agencies, donors and policymakers, and making links to emerging issues facing the aid sector.

The outcome of the process should be a strengthened and improved standard in support of fair, equitable and accountable relationships between vulnerable people and communities, local, national and international actors.

How can you get involved?

We are interested in partnering with other organisations to help us implement as wide a consultation as possible.  We are especially looking to partner with local and national organisations to hear their perspectives on using the standard and to help us engage with and involve vulnerable communities in the process. We also want to hear from individuals about how you have used the standard and your suggestions on how to improve it.

Join us at the HPNW in May to learn more about the process and how you can get involved. We will be sharing more details on the process and how to get involved on, so stay tuned!

You can also contact the CHS Revision Managers to learn more: