On 11th January 2017, the Humanitarian Leadership Academy held a meeting with the Kenya Red Cross Society (KRC), to reaffirm the two organisations’ commitment to strategic partnership and collaboration in the areas of learning, knowledge management, and innovation. The meeting, which took place at KRC’s offices, was attended by Saba Al Mubaslat, the Academy’s Chief Executive Officer and Dr. Abbas Gullet, Secretary General of the Kenya Red Cross. In attendance also were Charles Lwanga-Ntale and Elizabeth Myendo from the Kenya Academy Centre and Ahmed Idris of the Kenya Red Cross.
Building on the momentum of a recently signed Memorandum of Understanding, the two parties reiterated their commitment to working with the wide range of partnerships in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors, with a view to leveraging the comparative advantages of the different humanitarian sector stakeholders, and for greater effectiveness and efficiency of the sector.
At the meeting a number of opportunities for enhancing the collaboration were explored, with the guiding questions being:
- How do we ensure that this partnership adds value to what is already being done in the sector?
- Which other players need to be brought on board and why?
- How do we advance access to the learning materials on humanitarian preparedness and response especially at the community level?
- In what ways could the Academy’s and KRC’s existing platforms be used in complementarity and for maximum results?
- How do we engage at different levels of the humanitarian landscape – from local community level to region?
- How can the Academy and KRC play a catalytic role in promoting cross-border discussions and solutions to newly emerging humanitarian crises?
These questions, and others, generated an animated discussion which led to calls for practical actions to be undertaken by the two parties to demonstrate what could be achieved and to use the lessons to draw in other key players in the East Africa region.
The Kenya Academy Centre also shared plans for replicating lessons gained from their work in Uganda and Tanzania, initially working with the National Red Cross movements in those countries and with other likeminded organisations in the humanitarian sector.
In conclusion, Dr. Abbas offered his services in building the necessary relationships, adding:
“Let me know if you need any support with the movements and I will be more than happy to help. I look forward to enhancing the relationship with them more with support from the Academy.”