Can assistance be people-centred in the time of COVID-19?


The last few years, putting people at the centre of humanitarian action has rightly been a key component for humanitarian policy, programming and debates. But how easy is this to do in practice on the ground, especially now in the time of Covid-19?

Mitigation and containment of COVID-19 is dependent on people’s individual and collective actions. As such it is vital that the views and feedback of citizens, responders and health workers are included in programme coordination, design and implementation and that the ongoing response is informed by and adapted to the perspectives of affected and at-risk communities.

This session aims to interactively discuss the ability of the sector to put people truly centre-stage, based on the following 3 key questions:

  1. How do we balance the ethical importance of involving affected populations in all phases of the response with the principle of ‘doing no harm’?
  2. Can we obtain truly equitable insights and involvement across communities without putting people at risk?
  3. What methods are / could be most effective in capturing the perspectives and preferences of affected populations?


  • Hetty van Doorn - General Manager of Avenir Analytics
  • Louisa Seferis - Senior Programme Manager of Ground Truth Solutions