Call for Applications: Training Course on Humanitarian Assistance in West Africa (HAWA 20)


Conflict Training Course on Humanitarian Assistance in West Africa (HAWA 20)


The West African region is confronted with several inter-connected and transnational challenges, which constitute obstacles to integration and development. More than 130 million people in the region live in extreme poverty, a population that is particularly vulnerable to food insecurity, recurrent natural disasters, climate change, the economic crises and socio-political instability. The effects and consequences of natural and human-made disasters are diverse and include population movements, destruction to property and key socio-economic infrastructures, epidemics, food insecurity and malnutrition, and an increased weakening of state capacities to manage these challenges.

The ECOWAS Commission has thus adopted the ECOWAS Humanitarian Policy 2012-2017 and member states are currently working on the implementation of the respective Plan of Action. This course contributes to several strategic objectives of the Plan of Action of the ECOWAS Humanitarian Policy 2012-2017 through building capacities, increasing awareness and knowledge, and meeting training needs in support of effective humanitarian assistance.

In light of humanitarian crises and disasters, civilian nongovernment and government organizations, the police and the military often find themselves working side by side. Thereby, it is often the military as a last resort which has the necessary resources to provide immediate relief on a large scale. However, civil-military cooperation often lacks mechanisms for effective cooperation and a division of tasks and responsibilities. The need for coordinated measures was noted by the creation of the Oslo Guidelines on the use of military and civilian assets in cases of emergency, within OCHA’s Civil-Military Coordination Section (CMCS). This course addresses the need for coordinated measures and mutual understanding between civilian, military and police actors in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.

The Humanitarian Assistance in West Africa course is jointly organized by the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) and the Austrian Study Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution (ASPR), supported by the Austrian Development Agency (ADA) and the Austrian Ministry of Defense (MOD).

Course Aim

The aim of the course is to improve effectiveness of humanitarian assistance by providing participants with thorough knowledge and skills of the humanitarian sector and enhancing interaction and mutual understanding between civilian, police, and military actors involved in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief in West African region.


On completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Demonstrate increased knowledge and skills regarding comprehensive approaches to planning, coordination, and implementation in the field of humanitarian assistance;
  • Explain legal and normative frameworks that support humanitarian assistance;
  • Enhance interaction and mutual understanding amongst relevant stakeholders (civilian, military, police);
  • Foster networking and peer exchange among practitioners in the field of humanitarian assistance.

Target Group

Set at the operational level, the course targets a mixed group of mid-level civilian, police, and military professionals directly or indirectly engaged in humanitarian assistance and/or disaster relief operations in Africa generally, and in the West Africa Region particularly, either at the local, national or regional level. For the selection process, due attention will be given to a balanced geographical, ethnical, gender, and professional distribution in KAIPTC’s training courses.

Course Content

  • MODULE 1: Introduction to Humanitarian Assistance

Humanitarian Assistance, Disaster Risk Management Cycle, Typology of Disasters; Components of Humanitarian Action, Humanitarian Principles; Key Actors; Standards in Humanitarian Action, Codes of Conduct, Do no harm, Sphere Standards; International Humanitarian Law;

  • MODULE 2: Emergency Mass Evacuation

Disaster Risk Reduction, Introduction to Evacuations, Actors in Evacuations, Evacuation-Cycle, Understanding of communities and evacuation zone, Early Warning – Early Action, Emergency Shelter incl. Gender, Evacuation Law, Evacuation- / Contingency Planning, Minimum and Advanced Preparedness Actions;

  • MODULE 3: Humanitarian Actors: mandates, modes of operation, response mechanisms

Organizations on international regional and sub-regional and national level, Humanitarian Programme Cycle, The Cluster System, Surge Capacity

  • MODULE 4: Coordination and Information Management between actors in the field

What do we mean by coordination? Range of interactions, the Cluster Approach, Components of coordination, Liaison and coordination structures, Mechanisms and procedures, Humanitarian coordination in-country, Principles of interactions, Common understanding of each other’s vocabulary, Information Management, Assessment Process/MIRA Framework, On Site Operations Coordination (OSOCC) Concept

  • MODULE 5: Human Security, Displacement and Protection of Civilians

Introduction to Complex Emergencies, Legal Framework, Principles and Application of Human Rights in Missions, International Humanitarian Law & IDRL, Protection of Civilians, Specific needs of different groups, Vulnerability analysis, Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV), Gender sensitivity, Reasons for and phases of displacement, Definition and legal status of refugees and IDPs, Statelessness, Protection of refugees and IDPs, Refugee/IDP Site Planning

  • MODULE 6: Humanitarian Operation in fragile and conflict context / Civil-Military Coordination Humanitarian CMCoord

Understanding of organizational cultures: Military-Civilian, Use of MCDA and relevant guidelines, Use of Armed Escort, Safety and Security in the field, Threat Assessment, Operations in high-risk areas, Protective Measures, Stay and Deliver, Hostage situation, Negotiation in Emergencies, Humanitarian Access

  • MODULE 7: Conflict Sensibility and community engagement during emergencies

Concept of cultural awareness and challenges in intercultural interaction and communication, Conflict sensitivity and analysis, Do´s and Don’ts in different cultural regions, Community engagement, Gender and diversity, Working with interpreters (Do not Harm), triple nexus approach, the Agenda 2030;

  • MODULE 8: Public Information and Advocacy

Communication strategies in humanitarian assistance, Meeting Management including team debrief, Dealing with Authorities and local actors, Hand-over & Exit Strategy


The course employs a problem-based learning approach that combines theoretical knowledge with practical application to the realities and working environments of the participants. The course content will be delivered using a combination of tools such as lectures, case studies, group exercises, and role plays.


  • Course Languages: English and French. Translation will be provided.
  • Accommodation: It is a residential course and course participants will be accommodated at the KAIPTC.
  • Board and Lodging: Board, Lodging and course fee for participants will be covered with the generous support of the Austrian Development Agency (ADA) and the Austrian Ministry of Defence.
  • Costs: The costs of travel and visa are to be borne by the participants.
  • A limited number of full scholarships (including travel costs) for selected participants will be granted over the structures of the Austrian Defence Attaché System and the Austrian Ministry of Defence (MOD). In case this applies, relevant correspondence will have been addressed to the concerned official structures.
  • Insurance: KAIPTC and ASPR do NOT accept responsibility for individual medical, travel or other insurance. Participants are strongly advised to arrange their own insurance coverage for the duration of the training.
  • Visa: Costs for visa are NOT covered by ASPR or KAIPTC and must be covered by the participant. Visa applications must be organized by the participant.

How to Apply

To apply for the course, please go to this web address:

The web address will take you to the Course Application page on the KAIPTC’s Learning Management System (LMS). Please read and follow the instructions on the course application page carefully and exactly to be able to submit your application for the course.

NOTE: All applications must be completed fully. Partially completed applications will NOT be considered in the selection process.

Application Deadline: 12 January 2020



For administrative issues:

Ms. Marylyn Agblor

Training Coordinator KAIPTC

Tel: +233 (0) 302 718 200 Ext. 1012

Omit (0) when calling from outside Ghana



For course content issues:

Ms. Princella Godzi

Course Director Assistant HAWA

Tel: +233 (0) 302718200 Ext. 2165

Omit (0) when calling from outside Ghana





For administrative issues:

Ms. Claudia Hofer

ASPR Administrative Support

Tel: +43 (0) 3355 2498 507

Omit (0) when calling from outside Austria


For course content issues:

Project Manager HAWA ASPR

Ms. Birgit Mayerhofer