Opening the partnership door for non-traditional partners!

We know that UNICEF’s work in both humanitarian and development contexts is strengthened when partnering responsibly and equitably with local organizations.​

However, some of the very grassroots organizations (e.g. youth groups, indigenous, community associations etc.) without the traditional operating structures of a local NGO often face administrative barriers to partnering with UNICEF. Additionally non-traditional local organizations that have a mixed structure of quasi CSO-Governmental status are often left without further guidance on how UNICEF’s partnership framework accommodates these unique organizations. ​

We realize that our partners are also collaborating with organizations that do not fit these traditional frameworks. We are opening this space to jointly learn from the collective experiences of working with non-traditional partners, and how we can effectively work with them to deliver on our programming objectives for children and communities on the ground.​

We hope to use this space to jointly identify challenges and propose solutions to working with non-traditional partners, so that UNICEF can further embrace the diverse potential of the partnership community in pursuit of our shared goals to deliver results for every child.

Discussion Questions:

  • QUESTION 1:  Why is it important that we work with these non-traditional partners in our programmes? (please share the need and examples) ​
  • QUESTION 2: How do we manage our partnership risks with organizations that do not fit our existing partnership framework?​
    • For example- lack of official registration documents, lack of bank accounts, limited to no financial policies, no PSEA frameworks etc. ​
  • QUESTION 3: What are some of the models/examples of working with non-traditionally structured local organizations that you have observed or used?​
  • QUESTION 4: A proposed structure is to engage non-traditional partners via a partnership with an established civil society partner/NGO that can work we these organizations. ​
    • What are some of the benefits and challenges you see with this model? (e.g. risk transfer, opportunities, working via intermediaries etc.)
    • Are there models/approaches for UNICEF to directly partner with non-traditional partners? (e.g. removing certain requirements, establishing funding thresholds etc.)


Comments (2)

Aman Haile
Aman Haile Moderator

Dear partners and UNICEF staff, we look forward to your participation on this exciting topic! If some of you see the following message (below), please click on the  "View group" icon (highlighted in blue) and click "Join" to become a member of the consultation space, which will enable the comments feature.

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Hashmatullah Safi
Hashmatullah Safi

I propose to engage non-traditional partners either through CSO or UNICEF but preferably UNICEF to empower them and made them grow and stand on their own feet by benefiting the society as well. I suggest to have low cost structure for these partners such as SSFA which is for 50K and this can be maybe starting at 10K, just a suggestion. 









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