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Cordaid NL
Humanitarian Aid

Rapid relief, resilient recovery

Country Director


Marten Treffers

Saving lives, strengthening communities

Disasters hit the poorest communities the hardest. Cordaid’s humanitarian aid program provides needs-based humanitarian aid to people affected by natural or man-made disasters. Our aims are twofold: to save lives and to strengthen communities in coping with future crises. People affected by disaster have incredible capacities for survival and recovery. We believe that their participation in humanitarian programs is therefore essential.

Cordaid has a long history of offering humanitarian relief to the people who need it most. We are part of the Caritas network, of the Dutch Relief Alliance and of the Dutch Cooperating Aid Organizations (SHO – Giro555). Together, and in close collaboration with local civil society organizations, we respond to acute crises all over the world.

Our humanitarian assistance complies with the principles of humanitarian aid – humanity, neutrality, independence and impartiality – and respects International Humanitarian Law.

What we do

Ensuring basic human needs are met

When disasters occur, Cordaid provides emergency responses to ensure that basic human needs are met. We do this in collaboration with local partners and communities and other key humanitarian aid actors. Our aim is to save lives and to make sure people are properly protected, even in life-disruptive situations.

A refugee camp for people from South Sudan. Cordaid helps with food, water, shelter and psychosocial care. Image: Arie Kievit.

Resilient Recovery

At the same time, our Resilient Recovery approach strengthens the ability of communities to anticipate, adapt and respond to future hazards and shocks.

We enhance the capacities of local humanitarian actors to prepare and respond timely, effectively and appropriately to unfolding hazards and disasters. We reinforce and complement existing local capacities and partner with other international organisations to obtain maximum results (scope, scale, and speed) with quality interventions that meet the international principles and standards for humanitarian aid.

Before, during and after disasters

Cordaid intervenes before, during and after disasters, in sequence or simultaneously:

  • We improve disaster preparedness;
  • We provide emergency relief, answering immediate needs for survival: food, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), shelter and settlement, protection and cash;
  • We enable recovery and reconstruction and help to re-establish livelihoods.

-> Read more about Cordaid’s Humanitarian Aid program.

ECHO Partnership Certificate until 2027

Cordaid has been awarded the ECHO Partnership Certificate 2021-2027. Cordaid is eligible and suitable to be awarded EU funding for the implementation of humanitarian aid actions on the basis of a thorough review and assessment of Cordaid’s systems and applicable controls, rules and procedures.

-> Download the ECHO Partnership Certificate

  • 9.4 million people supported with humanitarian aid in 2020
  • 106,200 people provided with water and sanitation services in 2020
  • 61,800 people supported with cash-based interventions in 2020

Humanitarian Aid Services

Thematic expertise

Cordaid has expertise in the following humanitarian fields:

  • Shelter, settlement & non-food items
  • Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion (WASH)
  • Food Security & Livelihoods
  • Protection mainstreaming
  • Multi-purpose cash programming
  • Cash based interventions

Marten Treffers

Country Director

Program and grant management

Cordaid’s Humanitarian Aid Unit offers support to local implementing organizations and offers program assessment, development and implementation services.

We coordinate and/or implement 3 types of programs, all requiring their own specific forms of expertise:

1. Disaster preparedness  

  • training and facilitation, capacity building in emergency preparedness and response;
  • deployment of international specialist staff in case local capacity is overstretched;
  • contingency & preparedness planning with relevant stakeholders.

2. Emergency relief

We implement short term life-saving interventions, meeting the immediate needs of people affected by natural and man-made disasters. We manage grants and implement as well as manage programs and provide technical assistance in the following sectors:

  • building and repair of shelter and settlement;
  • procurement, logistics and distribution of non-food items;
  • water and sanitation and hygiene promotion (WASH);
  • food security and livelihoods;
  • integration of protection in humanitarian programs.
In Imvepi, Uganda, Cordaid has built a solar-powered water supply system that produces up to 80.000 liters a day and serves thousands of people. Image: Petterik Wiggers.

3. (Resilient) Recovery

  • We develop and facilitate community recovery processes that increase communities’ resilience to absorb and recover from hazards and shocks. Methodologies we use are participatory risk assessment and community action planning.
  • We provide technical assistance to rehabilitate basic infrastructure (mostly shelter and WASH, health & community centers and schools, drainage systems, roads, livelihoods). We make infrastructures and community systems more resilient to future hazards, for example in locating and building hazard resistant housing and water systems, and by increasing community knowledge on hazard resistant features.
  • We strengthen community organizations and local capacities to address hazards and disasters. Community preparedness, risk mapping and action planning by communities continues after Cordaid has left.
In the Teso region of Uganda, Cordaid and partner organization SOCADIDO support female farmers who struggle to maintain their livelihood because of climate change, land depletion or a lack of tools and agricultural knowledge. Cordaid and SOCADIDO provide seeds, tools, technology and training. Image: Mickael Franci.

Marten Treffers

Country Director