CARE International’s Advocacy Work
Advocacy is a key aspect of CARE’s humanitarian and development efforts, addressing not only the immediate needs of the poor, but also the root causes of poverty and obstacles to its elimination. By implementing a global and coordinated advocacy strategy, we at CARE believe that we can multiply the scope of our impact beyond program funding and technical support to influence the national and international policies that affect the lives of the poorest and most vulnerable communities around the world.
Increasingly, CARE International integrates an advocacy component into projects and programs, encouraging governments and international organizations to adopt enabling policy measures. We work with governments, United Nations institutions, the European Union and other multilateral organizations and stakeholder processes at global, regional and national levels, to actively promote change. Our advocacy messages are grounded in CARE’s longstanding and in-depth work in the field.
The CARE International Secretariat carries out its policy and advocacy work through its international advocacy coordination and representation offices in Geneva, New York and Brussels. Secretariat staff work in conjunction with CARE member and country offices, thus promoting collaborative and mutually supportive efforts across the globe.
Global Advocacy Thematic Focus
Global advocacy is one of the six strategic directions of CARE International’s Strategic Plan for 2007-2012. The goal of CARE’s global advocacy is to influence national, regional and international policies that affect the lives of the poorest and most vulnerable communities through coordinated and joint action by CARE’s members, country offices and the Secretariat.
CARE recognizes that women play a pivotal role in the global fight against poverty. Its advocacy work is thus framed in the context of gender equality and women’s empowerment, and focuses on the following global advocacy priority areas: women, peace and security; women and food security; maternal health; and gender and climate change. Global advocacy is also carried out on rapid responses to humanitarian crisis and countries in crisis.
CARE International’s Secretariat Advocacy and Representation Offices
CARE International’s Advocacy in Geneva
CARE International’s Geneva-based Secretariat office coordinates global advocacy across the confederation. The Geneva office works with members and country offices in the implementation of CARE’s four main advocacy priority priorities at global, regional and national levels. It also coordinates and supports CARE’s advocacy during rapid responses to humanitarian emergencies and in countries in crisis. Together with the New York and Brussels offices, CARE International in Geneva engages in policy and advocacy efforts in the context of the United Nations (UN) and other relevant multi-lateral processes. It also represents the confederation in relevant Geneva-based institutions and processes.
CARE International's Advocacy at the European Institutions, Brussels
CARE International’s policy and advocacy work towards the European Union (EU) institutions is carried out through a representation office in Brussels. Our representatives in Brussels work closely with the EU through the European Commission’s EuropeAid Development and Co-operation Directorate-General (DEVCO), which designs and implements the EU’s global development and aid delivery, and the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid Department (ECHO), which provides emergency assistance and relief to the victims of natural disasters and armed conflict outside the EU. Aside from working closely with members of the European Parliament (MEPs), our Brussels office also participates in different European Civil Society Organization (CSO) Networks such as CONCORD and VOICE, focusing on development issues. Likewise, the Brussels office collaborates with CARE members in different EU countries to influence national-level policy-making. Most recently, the Brussels office has been engaged in the European Commission’s Structured Dialogue for an efficient partnership in development with European CSOs, local authorities and CSOs in developing countries, and in discussions on the next (2014-2020) Multiannual Financial Framework seeking to put EU development and humanitarian aid higher on the EU agenda.
CARE International's Advocacy at the United Nations, New York
CARE International works in close conjunction with key UN institutions, UN member states and NGOs in order to monitor policy-making and promote international policies that support CARE’s principles and priority issues. The protection of women and children in armed conflict and the promotion of women’s roles in UN peacekeeping and peace-building efforts have been major areas of CARE’s advocacy work in New York.
Much of CARE’s advocacy work focuses on the UN Security Council, especially in relation to humanitarian assistance and relief efforts. CARE’s engagement with the Security Council often occurs through formal and informal collaboration with other NGOs. These include the 25-member NGO Working Group on the Security Council, which regularly meets with member states’ ambassadors to raise NGO concerns and call for specific policy changes, and the Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict, an international network founded to monitor and report on egregious violations against children in conflict settings and make recommendations to the Security Council and others for appropriate action.
In addition, CARE and its partners engage in regular consultations with the UN Office of the Coordinator for Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), UNICEF and many UN member states.