Agency Coordinating Body for Afghan Relief and Development

Humanitarian Twinning Program

Last Update: 08:52 AM 22-10-2018

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September 2018 Statistics

  • NNGOs in Twinning Program - 24
  • NNGOs graduated Twinning Program - 1
  • INGOs in Twinning Program - 12
  • NNGOs passed CHF due diligence – 17 passed includes graduated partner, 5 are waiting for due diligence review, 3 to apply
  • NNGOs with capacity assessment – 6 in the CHF Partner Base includes graduated partner, 2 newly passed this quarter, 11 are waiting for capacity assessments
  • NNGOs received CHF  projects – 2 NNGOs received multiple humanitarian projects direct funding, 2 NNGOs  partnered with INGOs to receive CHF projects indirect funding
  • NNGOs mapped

                         More than 155

  • Twinning Trainings Conducted

                         Training 105 days from 2015 through September 2018

  • SWOT analysis conducted

                          2015 – 23, 2016 - 22, 2017 – 3, 2018 - 25

  • April – Sept 2018
  1. NNGOs submitted 125 proposals
  2. New NNGO projects reported awarded 32 total, 13 humanitarian, 15 development, 4 not specified
  3. This included  13 INGO NNGO partner projects

Step by step to more localized aid

ACBAR contributed to this article which is about the Twinning Program.


2017 Annual Twinning Program Stakeholder Survey Results

The ACBAR Twinning Program 2017 Annual Stakeholder Surveys were done for three groups of stakeholders for the DFID Annual Review period of October 2016 through September 2017.  Surveys were developed for the NNGOs and INGOs participating in the program and also for OCHA and the clusters that interact with the NNGOs in the program.  Analysis and results from the survey can be found at


2016 Mid Term Assessment of the Twinning Program


In the Mid Term Program Review it was reported that, ‘UNOCHA has already been sharing the Twinning Program experience with other countries in which it operates, as the Twinning Program appears to be a systematic effort to achieve the global goal of UNOCHA for greater inclusion of national NGOs in the provision of humanitarian response. ‘

The Mid Term Assessment of the Twinning Program highlighted some very useful recommendations that will be incorporated into the program in order to make it stronger. Overall, the program has been very useful in helping members improve their organizations, policies and helping members collaborate with their INGO partners. As the program’s original goal was to help NNGOs pass the CHF Due Diligence (DD) the consultant recommended the scope of the program needed to change in order to make it relevant for those NNGOs that have passed the DD. This involved re-designing the program MoUs between partners in the 2nd Phase of the Twinning Program to be more specific in duties and to have more individualized agreements. 

Link to Assessment


The ACBAR Twinning Program


History of ACBAR Twinning Program

The ACBAR Twinning Program commenced in 2015 to address the lack of capacity of National NGO (NNGOs) providing humanitarian aid and lack of representation in the Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF). Amidst a multiplication of humanitarian crises worldwide, funds allocated to Afghanistan have decreased, while donors’ aversion to risk and their demands for accountability are increasing. Consequently, humanitarian focused NNGOs are struggling to meet donor requirements for funding.

The Twinning Program aims to address this by pairing NNGOs with INGOs that provide mentoring and guidance to their Afghan counterpart on institutional management, humanitarian practices, and strategy.   

in 2015 ACBAR identified, through a comprehensive mapping of humanitarian NNGOs in Afghanistan, 23 humanitarian NNGOs who qualified for the program. We selected the NNGOs according to the below criteria: in 2017 ACBAR identified three NNGOs through mapping

  • Humanitarian expertise (Food Security/FSAC,  Water & Sanitation/WASH, Health, Nutrition, Protection, Shelter)
  • Past experience in managing important funds
  • Recommendation from INGOs members of ACBAR
  • Recommendation from UN Clusters

We then paired all the NNGOs with an INGO depending on:

  • Common expertise
  • Common experience working together
  • Common location

Due to the rigorous nature of the CHF Due Diligence(DD) process and the funding requirements for Afghanistan Humanitarian Fund projects, the Twinning Program focuses on those NNGOs which have a history of implementing large scale humanitarian projects.  By September 2017, eleven Twinning Partner NNGOs passed CHF DD.

Through September 2017, 65 days of training have been provided to Twinning Program NNGO participants on subjects including Sphere, disability awareness, financial management, anti-corruption, and gender mainstreaming. For the second year, the twinning program developed trainings that focus on comprehensive proposal writing, gender mainstreaming, and anti-corruption. Management training sessions were held for integrity in NGO management, financial management, and project cycle management.

Twinning Program 2nd Phase

For the Twinning Program 2nd Phase a new MOU with the responsibilities of each party, ACBAR, NNGO and INGO has been developed.  In section 8 of each MOU any specific agreements between the INGO and NNGO are listed.  On April 6, 2017 a 2nd Phase Twinning Program Inauguration was held at DFID with the Twinning Partners.  The Twinning Program Annual Tea Party to update and recognize participation was October 25, 2017.

When the Twinning Program stared the second phase in April 2017, there were 21 NNGO and 10 INGO Twinning Partners.  By September 2017, three new NNGOs, two INGOs and one former participating INGO joined the Twinning Program.  Currently there are 24 NNGOs and 13 INGOS in the Twinning Program.

Activities identified for the 2nd phase continue to focus on increasing NNGO’s membership in the CHF, participation in the humanitarian clusters, ability to access future funding, ability to conduct quality assessments, and the sharing of knowledge between NNGOs and INGOs.

In short

  • Increase NNGO participation in the humanitarian clusters
  • Build NNGO capacity to access the CHF and other humanitarian funds
  • Increase NNGO ability to conduct quality assessments
  • Give the entire humanitarian community more access to local knowledge
  • Ensure all organizations involved follow international humanitarian principles

The Twinning Program is funded with UK Aid from the British people

For more information about the Twinning Program email