The OH response can be divided into two parts: the first is political, deals with the values and principles of partnership and serves as a reference document (essential condition for reviewing terms and conditions, operating contract, annexes and standard forms). The second is technical in nature, focusing on the administrative, financial and operational aspects of contract implementation. The European Commission`s Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (DG ECHO) does not intervene directly on the ground. The implementation of humanitarian aid is carried out by humanitarian organizations such as humanitarian non-governmental organizations (NGOs) with which DG ECHO is in partnership. Relations between the Commission`s European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Programme (ECHO) and its non-governmental partners are governed by the NGO Framework Partnership Agreement. The VPA sets out the principles and conditions of the partnership, as well as the objectives and conditions to be met for the implementation of EU-funded humanitarian actions. All actions and objectives are defined in order to make the most of available resources and to be as effective as possible. You can find them here: dgecho-partners-helpdesk.eu/become_a_partner/start The Commission`s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO) operations contribute to specific actions, projects or programmes managed by the United Nations through their organisations. The Financial and Administrative Framework Agreement (FAFA) establishes the general legal framework for all agreements between the EU and the United Nations. More information is available on the ECHO-UN partnership website. It is encouraging that NGOs and ECHO have reached agreement on almost all important issues in the context of cooperation in the VPA review.
The NGOs were able to convince ECHO of the added value and quality of their contribution, to which ECHO responded with the desire to explore informal partnerships and strengthen NGO representation with the Commission. In both cases, partners are selected according to specific criteria, legal and financial requirements as well as quality standards. This helps to ensure that partnerships are valuable to both the European Commission and the candidate organisation. Partner organisations implementing EU-funded humanitarian projects have a contractual obligation to recognise the partnership with the EU and the support they receive in all related activities. This includes presenting the EU`s visual identity on project websites. The Partnership Framework Agreement sets out the principles of the partnership between ECHO and humanitarian organizations. It defines the respective roles, rights and obligations of partners and defines legislation on humanitarian actions funded by DG ECHO. The partnership, the key to effective political debate, should be approached in two ways: regular consultations between partners; and a clarification of ECHO`s role in the partnership.
The framework partnership agreements mention the general rights and obligations of the parties. In addition, the rights and obligations of the parties at the conclusion of a specific grant agreement are defined and the rules for EU-funded humanitarian aid operations are established. The VPA aims to promote a quality partnership based on professionalism, diversity, the ability to meet humanitarian needs, compliance with agreed rules and standards, and the obligation to improve the delivery of humanitarian aid. In addition, the VPA aims to promote the quality, efficiency and effectiveness of aid to ensure that EU-funded humanitarian aid operations are implemented in the most appropriate, timely, efficient and effective way and achieve the results set out.