The plan will see Trócaire restructure how it manages its programmes around the world to ensure a greater focus on supporting people living through long-running conflicts. While continuing its vital work supporting food security, women’s empowerment, human rights and humanitarian aid, the charity will increase its focus on peace-building and supporting people in areas affected by conflict.
Trócaire CEO Caoimhe de Barra said an increased focus on conflict-prevention, peace-building and support for people in conflict zones was needed to respond to global trends:
“It is predicted that more than 80% of the world’s poorest people will be living in fragile or conflict-affected states by 2030. Despite this, only approximately 2% of aid spending is going towards conflict prevention and associated activities. We have decades worth of experience working with people living through conflicts in countries such as Somalia, South Sudan and Syria. Sadly, we expect this to become an even bigger part of our work in the years ahead.”
The new strategic plan will also see Trócaire significantly increase its commitment to localisation, the process of shifting power from northern NGOs to local NGOs and groups working to support people in their communities.
Caoimhe de Barra said that strengthening local civil society has always been fundamental to Trócaire’s work but will be even more important in the years ahead:
“Trócaire has worked in partnership with local organisations since our foundation in 1973. We believe that the time is right for the aid sector as a whole to shift its mindset and operations towards a partnership model that puts local communities in charge of their own development. Over the next five years we will significantly ramp-up our work on supporting local partners to build their capacity, take a lead and ultimately deliver transformative change for their own communities.
“The aid sector evolved at a time when countries in the developing world were emerging from colonisation and had not yet developed the strong and diverse civil societies that are now actively driving change. The role of the aid sector must now be to support these groups to drive the change they want to see in their own communities. The sector needs a shake-up to ensure local people are driving local solutions.
“The Covid crisis has demonstrated how local organisations are best placed to respond to crises and implement local solutions. The role of organisations such as Trócaire is to support those efforts, while ensuring development remains in the hands of local people, which is where it must be.
“For almost 50 years, Trócaire and our supporters have delivered life-saving and life-changing aid to people around the world. Our work today is as relevant as it was in 1973. But the contexts have changed and this plan sees us adapt to those changes in a way that will allow us to continue to make a real difference in the lives of people around the world.”