Working Principles


Twelve Basic Rules for Humanitarian Aid

The charities and Federal Ministries acting together in the Coordination Committee for Humanitarian Aid reached agreement on the “Twelve basic rules for humanitarian aid abroad” for their collaboration. Help Montenegro complies with these rules as they lay the foundation for our humanitarian aid efforts and are our guiding work principles.

  1. People suffer misery through disasters, wars and crises, which they are not able to deal with themselves. Reducing the misery of these people is the aim of humanitarian aid.
  2. Everyone has the right to humanitarian aid and humanitarian protection, just like there must be a right to provide humanitarian aid and grant humanitarian protection.
  3. Aid and protection are granted without considering race, religion, nationality, political conviction or other distinguishing features. Humanitarian aid must not be made dependent on either political or religious beliefs and it must not promote the latter. The only criterion in considering priorities when providing assistance is the need of the people.
  4. The organisations and state institutions involved in providing aid act in line with their own guidelines and implementation strategies.
  5. They preserve people’s dignity when providing their assistance.
  6. They respect the laws and customs of the countries in which they are deployed. Insofar as there are conflicts with provisions of the host country when seeking to provide the best possible assistance, a settlement with regard to the aim of providing humanitarian aid should be borne in mind.
  7. They will support and work with each other as far as possible on measures for humanitarian aid.
  8. The people providing aid undertake to be accountable both to the recipients of the aid as well as the people whose subsidies and donations they accept.
  9. Humanitarian aid is primarily assistance for survival. This includes self-reliance and promotes reducing the likelihood of disasters. It observes development requirements, where necessary.
  10. The organisations and state institutions working on humanitarian aid involve local partners in their planning and measures from the outset.
  11. The recipients of aid are also involved in the organisation and implementation of the measures.
  12. Relief must be deployed as required and should comply with local standards; a decisive factor for the selection and dispatch of relief must be solely the current emergency situation. When obtaining relief, priority should be given to purchasing in the region affected by the emergency situation.