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Promoting access to quality, safe, and relevant education for all persons affected by crisis

World Humanitarian Summit 2016


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WHS and EiE  |  WHS background  |  Add your voice!  |  Key Resources


The first World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) was held in Istanbul on 23-24 May 2016. The summit was a global call to action by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The purpose of the summit was to set a forward-looking agenda for humanitarian action to collectively address future humanitarian challenges. The Summit had three main goals:

  1. Reaffirm commitment to humanity and humanitarian principles;
  2. Initiate actions and commitments which enable countries and communities to prepare for and respond to crises and be more resilient to shocks;
  3. Share best practices which help save lives around the world, placing affected people at the centre of humanitarian action and alleviating suffering.


WHS and Education in Emergencies

Click to read the summary of the Special Session on Education in Emergencies and Protracted Crises, which took place during the summit.

WHS provided a unique opportunity to ensure that education remains part of the humanitarian conversation. And thanks to the many voices of crisis-affected people and those serving them, education in emergencies was highlighted again and agian throughout the lengthy WHS consultation process. The October 2015 consultation process synthesis paper Restoring Humanity: Global Voices Calling for Action makes clear statements about the importance of education, both as a humanitarian intervention and as a necessity for all stages of societal development:

"...[H]umanitarian action must serve the specific needs of children in all stages of preparedness and response, and prioritize education and protection for children affected by disasters or conflicts." (p. 037)

"...[H]umanitarian action is failing if it does not include everyone and address the specific needs of the most vulnerable, particularly children, young people, older people, and persons with disabilities. ...[C]hild protection and education in emergencies must be prioritized as lifesaving interventions alongside health, food, water and shelter." (p. 044) 

"There is also the potential to set minimum targets for specific issues, such as ensuring that no displaced child should lose a month of education." (p. 061)

Click for information and resources about the
education-related events happening at WHS

WHS Background

Leading up to the Summit, extensive regional and thematic consultations took place at country and global level. These consultations provided an opportunity to all humanitarian actors to discuss challenges, barriers, emerging trends, identify recommendations and develop a vision and plan of action for the future humanitarian action.

Four broad themes were discussed in the consultations leading up to the summit and will be at the heart of the summit itself:

The consultations have called for humanitarian action to deliver in five key areas:

Click to read some of the recurring issues, statements, and recommendations from the NGO community, as compiled by ICVA.


Take Action

INEE will continue to monitor the discussions and agendas following the May 2016 summit, and we count on you to raise your voice to keep education a part of the dialogue. It is our hope that education remains at the forefront of all of the commitments and concrete actions that emerge from the WHS process. 

We encourage you to follow the WHS discussions at and on Facebook and Twitter (@WHSummit). #ReShapeAid #ShareHumanity


Key Resources