A review of global surge capacity commissioned by the Emergency Capacity Building Project highlighted the following concerns affecting humanitarian organisations: a critical need to scaleup human, financial and material resources in order to effectively fulfill humanitarian obligation,and the need to do it in a more collaborative approach (People in Need, 2007). Almost a decade later, international organisations continue to be confronted by the same year-on-year financing gap, and not finding enough, experienced and easily deployable personnel, which by now have become regular challenges in the humanitarian sector while responding to numerous disasters and stronger weather-related events affecting more people. This is especially the case in the Asia-Pacific region, now known as the most disaster-prone region globally (UN ESCAP, 2015). It is these shared challenges and the desire to find a collective solution that motivated a group of international organisations, mostly UK-based, to form Start Network. It is a platform that aims to enable humanitarian agencies and their local partners in many disaster-prone areas to work together and find the best solutions possible given existing constraints. With the primary support of DFID, Start Network sought to demonstrate new and innovative ways of enabling NGOs to manage and respond to emergencies (Start Network, 2016). Currently, it has a number of projects/mechanisms that respond to various identified needs among its members. But the two mechanisms which are of importance for this learning exercise are the Start Fund and the Transforming Surge Capacity (TSC) project, which have been activated for the first time by Start Network partners in the Philippines.
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