The NGO Coordination Committee for Iraq (NCCI) is pleased to announce that Public Aid Organisation (PAO) and Mercy Corps have been elected as co-chairs for the NGO Early Recovery Forum (NERF). Public Aid Organisation will be represented by Mahdi Maghdid, and Mercy Corps will be represented by Federico Capurro. Both Mahdi and Federico have extensive experience of working in conflict, post-conflict and early recovery contexts.
As Iraq slowly moves from an emergency context to an early-recovery one, and humanitarian action begins to move into more sustainable recovery, resilience, and ultimately development, NGOs have an important role to play in helping to rebuild Iraqi society. In light of this, the NERF will act as a platform for national and international NGOs to help shape and advance the sustainable recovery of conflict-affected communities in Iraq. The NERF will act as a platform for members and NGOs to facilitate a process involving early-recovery, meaning, the restoring, and improvement of basic social, economic, and safety conditions within and across communities affected by conflict.
NERF will act as a space for NGOs to share ideas and information regarding early-recovery activities. These activities will help communities overcome the effects of conflict, and could include information on programmes that are helping to mitigate physical safety threats through mine action, and the reduction of armed violence, helping to establish a solid base for economic recovery and growth through targeted livelihood activities, helping to re-establish and increasing access through infrastructure repair, and capacity building for public servants, ensuring representative and accountable governance through community mobilization, and capacity-building for Iraqi civil society, and building tolerance and social cohesion through peace-building and protection activities.
The forum will amongst other things, share information about events, initiatives, and policies affecting early recovery work in Iraq, and help facilitate partnerships between national and international NGOs with a focus in this area. Additionally, the NERF aims to inform early recovery priorities and strategies of key stakeholders and partners, including the Government of Iraq, the Kurdistan Regional Government, the UN and donor community through advocacy, and representation in relevant coordination bodies.
NCCI is particularly excited that we have a national NGO as one of the co-chairs who will play an important role in early-recovery and reconstruction in Iraq. The NERF will be integrated into NCCI, which will act as a secretariat for the NERF co-chairs and members, provide a space for meetings, facilitate communication with members, support information management, and work closely with the Advocacy Working Group on advocacy related matters.