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The World Food Programme (WFP) is proud to work with around 1,000 non-governmental organizations (NGOs) around the globe, from small grassroots groups to large international humanitarian agencies.

Without this collaboration, our efforts to bring much-needed assistance to 128.2 million people in over 120 countries would not be possible. Without the vocal support of these organizations, our efforts to put zero hunger at the top of the international agenda would be far less successful.

NGOs are at our side in many programme settings, from food distributions in emergencies to longer-term initiatives such as school meals and asset creation. In fact, three-quarters of our food and cash-based transfers are delivered together with NGOs. In partnership, we combine complementary strengths and expertise with the common goal of achieving zero hunger.

NGO partners enable us to deliver quickly and effectively, and to access areas that we would be unable to reach alone. NGOs, in particular local organizations, are often in the unique position of having a long-term presence in, and a deep contextual understanding of, the communities we work with. Their daily contact with communities before, during and after emergencies provides us with an invaluable link to the people we serve. They allow us to carry out increasingly innovative and multi-dimensional programmes.  

In turn, with its vast field presence, WFP enables NGOs to expand their own reach. They can strengthen their technical knowledge and expertise by drawing on our decades-long experience in logistics, emergency preparedness, cash and voucher distribution, vulnerability mapping and nutrition programming. WFP can also provide the funding needed to scale up programmes, which NGOs may be unable to secure alone.

Supporting local and national first responders

In 2021, for the first time, WFP consulted with its local and international NGOs on the development of its Strategic Plan 2022-2025, which commits to working more deeply together. This consultation also gave NGOs the opportunity to ensure that their own strategies were aligned with those of WFP, where possible.

As a signatory of the Grand Bargain – a package of reforms to humanitarian funding launched at the World Humanitarian Summit in 2016 – WFP agreed to provide more support and funds to first responders, including NGOs. 

The drive towards a more localized response to humanitarian needs is already reflected in WFP’s capacity strengthening activities with local and national NGOs: around 86 percent of WFP’s NGO partners are country specific. Developing their capability ensures our interventions have a long-lasting impact, by empowering communities and countries to address their own food challenges. 

Annual Partnership Consultations

WFP’s Annual Partnership Consultations (APCs) have been an important date on the development calendar since 1995. They provide a unique opportunity for WFP and current and potential partners from around the globe to come together and engage in strategic discussions on burning topics, including tangible and trackable action plans to save and change lives in a more effective, efficient and innovative way. Each year, hundreds of local and international NGO partners are invited to join with their CEOs and directors of operations.

APC 2022
Between the 25 and 27 of October, hundreds of partners gathered in the WFP headquarters to attend the Annual Partnership Consultation 2022. For the very first time, the event was held in a hybrid format allowing many representatives of our cooperating partners to follow the 7 sessions featured in the programme via zoom. Panelists and participants of APC 2022 tackled some of the most burning issues within the humanitarian sector, committing to further strengthen our relationships to address the great challenges of our present time. On day one, CEOs of international (PLAN international, Action Against Hunger, Welthungerhilfe) and local organizations engaged with WFP leadership, during a strategic roundtable, in a series of focused sessions on the global food security crisis and response, the status of political engagement, the increasing difficulties to raise funds, the programmatic solutions that could help our community pass through the storm and the crucial role collective advocacy can play to support our efforts. The agenda of the following two days featured the soft launch of the new School Meals Coalition communication and outreach initiative and a read-out of a recent study on WFP’s Field Level Agreement (FLA). The programme also included in-depth conversations around the adoption of innovative tools to prevent sexual exploitation and abuse, best practices on how to break down disability barriers and foster inclusion, the role of the Inter Agency Working Group on Specialized Nutritious Food and the importance of engaging with women-led organizations during emergency response. Read summary report
APC 2021
This Annual Partnership Consultation (APC 2021) brough together more than 100 CEOs from 60+ partner organisations and represented an important opportunity to strengthen our partnerships, while examining the tools and mechanisms needed to jointly save and change lives in these challenging times. During APC 2021 WFP and partners launched the famine prevention and mitigation compact, an initiative that encourages local and international NGOs and WFP to work to implement advocacy actions in a more coordinated manner, developing joint outreach strategies and maximizing the impact of their communication campaigns, each according to their strength - to tackle the global hunger and nutrition crisis. Read summary report
APCs 2020
The WFP Annual Partnership Consultation (APC 2020) was held online from 19-23 October 2020. The overall theme of the Consultation was “Partnering in the New Normal” which allowed for all sessions to reflect on what parts of our joint COVID-19 emergency response worked, what we could have done better and how, as partners, we can intensify efforts to save and change lives in the age of the pandemic. The agenda was made up of 14 sessions across the week, was attended by over 200 partners from 46 organizations and 134 WFP colleagues from all over the world. Read summary report
APCs 2019
The 2019 Annual Partnership Consultation (APC) was an opportunity for leaders of NGO partners and WFP to discuss some of the most pressing global challenges and opportunities that the humanitarian and development community are facing and align on common strategic interests and priorities. Read summary report
APCs 2018
The 2018 APC brought together 78 representatives from 56 WFP non-governmental partners to explore ways to improve our common operations in the humanitarian and development spheres. The agenda resulted in a series of panel discussions on topics deemed to be the most relevant with time allocated to questions and answers from participants. Read summary report
APCs 2017
The 2017 event was an introductory opportunity for Executive Director David Beasley to host NGO partners in Rome. Only CEOs or their deputies were in attendance, to ensure high-level policy conversations and a real opportunity for senior NGO leaders to understand the Executive Director’s strategic direction for WFP. Key discussions included the UN reform agenda; famine and early action; the triple nexus of humanitarian action, development and peace; and the impact of the digital revolution on humanitarian action. Read summary report
APCs 2016
WFP’s 2016 APC was about understanding the impact of recent key milestones such as SDG Summit, the World Humanitarian Summit and Grand Bargain on NGO partnerships. With more than 60 organizations in attendance, including the presence of 30 CEOs, the APC welcomed new partners, including members of local and national civil society, and faith-inspired groups. UN agencies FAO, UNICEF, UNHCR and OCHA also joined the meetings. Read summary report
APCs 2015
On 25 November, WFP welcomed a group of international and national NGO partners for the 2015 APC. The purpose of this edition was to seek feedback from partners on WFP's current NGO engagement strategy. Key outcomes included feedback on engagement plan, capacity building, and joint advocacy. Read summary report
APCs 2014
In 2014 WFP welcomed nearly 60 of its NGO and civil society partners to engage in dialogue on topics reflecting the global humanitarian and development debate. Themes explored were lessons learned from WFP-NGO partnerships in Level 3 emergencies (the most severe, large-scale humanitarian crises), the future of humanitarian action, and implementing the Sustainable Development Goals. Read summary report

Contact us

The NGO Partnerships Unit is based in WFP’s headquarters in Rome. It functions both as the focal point for NGO partners implementing WFP’s operations across the globe, and as a resource centre for WFP regional bureaux and country offices seeking guidance and good practice on NGO partnerships. 

The NGO Partnerships Unit has been leading a digital transformation of the management of WFP’s cooperating partners worldwide since 2019. The goal is to digitalize each step of the partnership cycle, bringing improved efficiency, transparency and integrity and, ultimately, quality assistance to our beneficiaries.

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