The members are 42 national and international aid agencies from five continents, ranging from high-profile organisations to smaller agencies.
The aim is to deliver effective aid, harnessing the power and knowledge of the network to make faster and better decisions to help people affected by crises. They are developing more effective ways to work together, and new approaches that will reduce the scale of human suffering.
They believe that the system of humanitarian aid that has operated for the past 70 years is no longer working as it should. The aim is to challenge that system and to help to bring about change.
They call what they are aiming for a “new humanitarian economy” – a system that reduces the power of centralised institutions and bureaucrats and gives more control to communities and individuals on the front line of every crisis.
The governance of Start Network is overseen by the Board of Trustees with key decisions ratified by the Membership. The Board is elected by the Membership and currently consists of six member agency representatives acting in an individual capacity, and four independents. The Membership is represented by the Assembly, which consists of one senior representative – usually the Humanitarian Director or CEO – from each agency as well as their deputy. The Assembly is an important forum for discussion and a sounding-board that ultimately informs the decisions of the Board of Trustees.