International and Non-Governmental Organizations
Numerous international and non-governmental organizations provide humanitarian and emergency aid around the world. The major institutions in this category are described below.
- CARE International
- International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
- International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)
- Médecins sans Frontières (MSF)
- Oxfam International
- World Vision International
CARE Canada is part of the CARE International network, one of the world's largest independent relief and development organizations. CARE International and CARE Canada work with communities in over 70 developing countries to improve living conditions and respond to urgent needs after natural disasters and conflicts. In such emergency situations, CARE provides food, water, and shelter to affected communities and helps them prepare for future disasters.
CARE is a confederation of autonomous national members who develop and implement their own programs. Projects are therefore implemented at the community level, so the CARE country office is the main contact point for interested suppliers. National members with lead responsibility for a given country manage some programs from the home country. Country offices sometimes use procurement advisors for larger contracts that follow international competitive bidding rules.
The ICRC is a neutral, independent humanitarian organization headquartered in Geneva. Mandated by the international community, the ICRC promotes international humanitarian law and helps people affected by armed conflicts and internal disturbances. The Committee directs and coordinates international relief and assistance activities conducted by the International Red Cross and the Red Crescent Movement.
The Logistics Division in Geneva handles procurement, purchasing, warehousing and transportation. Interested suppliers should contact the Logistics Division and/or consult with regional ICRC delegations.
The IFRC is the world's largest humanitarian organization. Its main activities relate to disaster management, which includes responding to humanitarian emergencies and helping countries reduce the likelihood and impact of future disasters. IFRC National Societies, through teams of specialized volunteers, are first responders to crises and provide relief supplies such as food, shelter, water and basic health care.
The National Societies implement most IFRC programs. The Secretariat, regional offices, and country delegations provide support as needed, particularly in mobilizing relief supplies and transporting items to the affected areas. The Logistics sections in Geneva, Nairobi, and Abu Dhabi, and the Pan-American Disaster Response Unit in Panama, are the main providers of logistical support and can be contacted for information on long-term emergency requirements.
MSF is an independent humanitarian medical relief agency that provides medical aid globally. It operates where there is no medical infrastructure or where the existing one cannot withstand the pressure to which it is subjected. In most cases, relief programs become rehabilitation projects that may run for several years after the most urgent needs have been met.
Interested suppliers should refer to the MSF Reference Books that give the specifications for each of the products the agency purchases, including guides for drugs and medical supplies, medical equipment, laboratory equipment, surgical instruments and logistics.
Oxfam is involved in long-term program work and short-term emergency relief, as well as global campaign action and research on global justice issues. Oxfam is active throughout the world and is one of the most important responders to humanitarian crises, particularly in the water and sanitation sector.
Oxfam programs are identified, developed and implemented by the affiliated organizations. Oxfam Great Britain is the largest of the affiliated organizations and plays a leading role in developing standards for emergency response. Oxfam Canada and Oxfam Quebec are good contacts for Canadian companies interested in getting involved with Oxfam International.
World Vision is one of the largest independent Christian relief and development organizations in the world. It acts through a global partnership of national offices to conduct child-focused emergency relief, sustainable community development, and advocacy in 92 countries.
Given that most projects are designed and implemented locally, interested suppliers should contact regional and national offices as listed under the "Where We Work" section of the World Vision International website. World Vision Canada is a good contact point for Canadian companies interested in getting involved with the organization.