The Humanitarian Leadership Academy (the Academy) is proud to partner with the Diaspora Emergency Action and Coordination (DEMAC*) Initiative to improve diaspora emergency response capacity and coordination with the formal humanitarian system, through the provision of face to face technical training, a train the trainer session, and a series of new online modules hosted on the Academy’s e-learning platform Kaya.

DEMAC has been working with diaspora groups since 2015 to:

  • Raise awareness regarding diaspora humanitarian interventions,
  • Encourage greater coordination and understanding between diaspora responders and the traditional humanitarian actors
  • Conduct research into the work and impact of diaspora response

The research found that while diaspora interventions are often fast, efficient and impactful there was a need for technical and operational capacity in order to be able to engage in equitable partnerships with institutional humanitarian actors. Specifically, the research identified that they required skills and competencies in core humanitarian principles, technical areas, advocacy, relationship building and resource mobilisation.

The Academy was able to support DEMAC with funding due to the strong link the project has with the Charter4Change following the World Humanitarian Summit, which called for organisations to take immediate action to enable a more locally-led response. Enabling underserved groups to play a greater role in humanitarian response remains a key focus in the Academy’s mission to enable people around the world to prepare for and respond to crises in their own countries.

The project provided face to face training and train the trainer sessions to 15 diaspora organisations on topics including humanitarian standards and principles, the international humanitarian system, needs assessment, Monitoring Evaluation Accountability and Learning (MEAL), financial management, reporting and risk assessment.

  “I must thank DEMAC and the Academy for organising the Humanitarian Principles, Volunteerism and Coordination training. The training tackled the problem regarding the limited capacity most small and diaspora organisations encounter in terms of how to measure the impact of the work they do.

Now I am applying it, and with the support of DEMAC hopefully I will be able to go back and share this same training with our partner organisation and the local humanitarian network we run in Nigeria, especially connecting them with the E-Learning platform which is a sustainable way of closing the gap.”

– Abimbola Junaid, ARISE/CISLAC Nigeria diaspora





In addition, the project has created a series of online modules, available through Kaya on;

  • The Humanitarian Principles
  • Needs Assessments
  • Safety & Security
  • Accountability & Transparency
  • Organisational Development
  • Advocacy and Policy
  • Project Development
  • Bid Writing
  • Reporting
  • Monitoring and Evaluation

These modules have been designed with diaspora responders in mind but would be beneficial for new humanitarian workers, project managers, managers, volunteers, local responders and anyone wanting entry level insight into the humanitarian sector, setting up an organisation, being an effective advocate and utilising monitoring and evaluation for greater impact.

To get started with these modules, or one of our 350+ free online courses, visit


*DEMAC is an ECHO-funded initiative implemented by the Danish Refugee Council, AFFORD-UK and the Berghof Foundation. 

Associated partners

The Diaspora Emergency Action and Coordination (DEMAC) Initiative

Kaya course recommendations:


capacity buildingCharter4ChangeDEMACDiasporaelearningface to facehumanitarianKayalocalisationresponsetrain the trainerTraining
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