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The Disasters and Emergencies Preparedness Programme was a three-year programme that developed effective humanitarian response where it was needed the most. It aimed to improve the way countries coped with people caught up in a disaster or conflict. DEPP was one of the largest investments of its kind and was funded by UK Aid and managed collaboratively by the CDAC and Start Networks, leveraging the expertise of more than 50 member organisations.

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DEPP in Action

The Projects

The collaborative approach taken by DEPP aimed to improve the quality and speed of humanitarian response at a national and local level by building the capacity of national actors who are predominantly the first responders to a disaster. DEPP projects were designed to build capacity in individuals, organisations and in systems.

​To read more about the learning gained from the delivery of DEPP projects, please visit

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What did our partners say?

The Disasters and Emergencies Preparedness Programme worked with 45 partners around the world. Here's what some of them said about the programme.

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  • Programme Manager at SOPROP, local partner of the DEPP Protection in Practice project in DRC

"Change is necessary in the way the humanitarian system works. Yes, it is true that [the humanitarian system] supports local organisations to promote human rights, to reach out internationally and to develop managerial capacities. But it is also a discriminatory system weakening the local civil society, while often substituting legitimate local organisations and local human resources at a much higher cost."

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  • Head of UNHCR Goma office, member of the DEPP Learning Hub in Democratic Republic of Congo

"Capacity by itself is not enough. Enabling environments and resources are necessary to express them concretely. That includes psychological, political and organisational environments."

"There is a wealth of raw capacities available locally. However it is rarely solicited."

  • Arsene Kireho
  • Project Manager at CAFOD, DEPP Shifting the Power project in Democratic Republic of Congo

"Local organisations should rise to the challenge and emulate international NGOs and ‘big players’ to access available resources. But the system should also be able to acknowledge and value local capacities in their own rights – as they form eventually the ground for sustainable resilience to disasters."

Further Information

Find out more about the DEPP programme