128 million people around the world require immediate humanitarian assistance

The Crisis and Support Centre does more than assist French nationals in distress abroad. Because a crisis does not choose its victims and all must be rescued, the Crisis Centre was created to centralize all types of assistance within a single organization. In a crisis situation, a plane carrying emergency relief or humanitarian aid for local populations may return to Paris with French nationals needing to be repatriated.

Alongside these activities, the Ministry also provides post-crisis stabilization support. A disaster may impact a country’s institutions and even its political, health or economic structures. In this type of situation, a system needs to be available to provide emergency relief and assist the country in its rebuilding efforts. This is the purpose of the Stabilization Department, created in 2014 to complement the Crisis Centre’s actions and which led to changing its name to the Crisis and Support Centre.

Confronting the emergency

Organizing the humanitarian response

Natural disasters, health crises, armed conflicts, political crises, displaced populations… The Mission for Humanitarian Action is responsible for coordinating France’s emergency humanitarian response.

The MAH acts in close coordination with other departments of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and may involve all French actors likely to provide an adapted response (ministerial departments, NGOs, civil security, armed forces, foundations). In most cases, its actions are part of an international response to which several actors partake, including the United Nations, International Organizations (Red Cross, Red Crescent, etc.), the Directorate-General for Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations of the European Commission (ECHO)…

An event occurs, the affected State calls for international assistance through European and/or UN mechanism. The Mission for Humanitarian Action examines the request and its ability to respond thereto, pulls together an appropriate response and coordinates the Government’s action.
By providing financial support to NGO and private partners or through direct deployment of human resources and equipment on the ground in the framework of an emergency operation, the MAH has the ability to react swiftly and appropriately – thanks to the support of the logistical unit of the CDCS which can provide transportation capacities, rapid shipment of equipment and emergency financial assistance.

Beyond episodes of extreme emergencies, the Mission for Humanitarian Action entertains a regular dialogue with French humanitarian actors, with whom it coordinates medium and long-term operations in protracted crisis situations (Irak, Syria, Bangladesh, etc.)

In 2017-2018, emergency and medium-term projects were conducted in Syria and its neighboring countries, in Irak, in the Western Balkans, the Palestinian territories, the Lake Chad basin, the Central African Republic, Madagascar, Domenica and Guatemala.

The MAH is also responsible for the dissemination and implementation of France’s humanitarian strategy. This five-year roadmap for humanitarian action adopted in 2018 revolves around three pillars: first, implementing an active humanitarian diplomacy promoting and reinforcing international humanitarian law through better protection of humanitarian and medical personnel on conflict theaters and increased dissemination of the associated legal principles within armed forces; second, increased resources devoted to a more efficient and transparent humanitarian action; third, a humanitarian action oriented towards sustained crisis resolution.

Confronting the emergency

Helping the rebuilding process

The Stabilization Department was created in 2014 to shore up the crisis response system with dedicated support for post-crisis recovery . The CDCS finances projects and is able to quickly mobilize experts to support political transitions and help countries recovering from a crisis move forward with the rebuilding process. Through actions that have a quick impact, the Crisis and Support Centre meets a twofold objective: help restore governmental functions and enable populations to return to living conditions that are as normal as possible.

Confronting the emergency

The CDCS’s stabilization support actions are based on three strategic areas:

1. Re-establishing security and basic governmental functions:
• Assist in mine clearance operations, building up and training security forces, and reintegrating former combatants
• Support electoral processes in countries in a post-crisis situation
• Re-establish access to basic services (energy, water, education, healthcare, etc.)
• Support transitional justice and access to justice for citizens

2. Stimulating the local economy and strengthening civil society:
• Assist in reconciliation processes (e.g., community or farmer-herder conflicts)
• Support media organizations and human rights advocates
• Contribute to local economic stimulation initiatives (income-generating activities, professional training, etc.)
• Aid efforts to re-establish dialogue between the government and civil society

3. Preparing the rebuilding process and long-term development:
• Support the government reform process (decentralization, public service, etc.)
• Redeploy the judicial system by training magistrates and strengthening the criminal justice system
• Revive public finances mobilizing domestic resources
• Prevent radicalization and fight violent extremism