Ethiopia Humanitarian Fund (EHF 2023 – 2026)

More than 28 million people in Ethiopia are in need of humanitarian assistance as a result of internal conflict, displacement, and recurrent natural hazards, primarily drought. An estimated 5.7 million people are displaced internally as a result of conflict (main driver of displacement in the country) and drought. Additional 2 million people are IDP returnees. The country also hosts more about 1mio refugees from Somalia, South Sudan, Eritrea, and Sudan. The Ethiopia Humanitarian Fund is a pooled fund that aims at providing rapid and flexible humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable and underserved areas. Switzerland has been reconfirmed in 2023 member of the EHF Steering Committee.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Humanitarian Assistance & DRR
Material relief assistance
Humanitarian efficiency
Protection, access & security
01.01.2023 - 31.12.2026
CHF  3’000’000

The intensification of shocks in the country such as conflicts, drought, and floods have caused a substantial increase in the number of people in need. The draft 2023 Humanitarian Needs Overview (HNO) reports 33,8M people in need throughout the country, 32% of the country’s population.

Ethiopia is currently facing the worst drought in the last forty years, with five consecutive failed rainy seasons. Although pastoral communities are used to failed rainy seasons, the ongoing drought is unprecedented and causing large scale humanitarian needs.

Violence has been one of the main drivers of humanitarian needs in Ethiopia in the past few years. In 2022 violence continued to affect multiple regions of the country.

Objectives Vulnerable people affected by crisis have access to needs based, targeted, timely and efficient life-saving assistance and protection.
Target groups

In 2023, the prioritized humanitarian response is structured around three strategic objectives, aiming to address immediate lifesaving needs, provide safe and inclusive access to essential services, and contribute to support and build linkages towards recovery and resilience. A key component of the HRP also involves ensuring that gender, protection, accountability to affected people (AAP), and prevention from sexual exploitation and abuse (PSEA) are well integrated across the different segments of the response plan.

The 2023 HRP targets the most vulnerable people across the country, both displaced and non-displaced, including those who face serious protection concerns due to conflict and violence, and those who have critical needs caused by the extreme drought, which is affecting the lives of millions of Ethiopians. Particular attention will be given to building the capacity of local and national NGOs, and enabling their meaningful engagement in humanitarian response, in line with the ongoing operationalization of the HCT NNGO Engagement Strategy and building on efforts and achievements made in 2022.

Medium-term outcomes

1)    Lives are saved and sustained.

2)    Protection services for affected communities are provided.

3)    Livelihoods and basic services delivery are supported to strengthen resilience to recurrent shocks.

4)    Localization is enhanced.

5)    Accountability to Affected People (AAP), Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA), and Gender Equality are strengthened.

6)    Gender Based Violence (GBV) is adressed and responded to.


Expected results:  

Outputs derives from the annual Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) to which the EHF contributes.

Overall, by providing timely, coordinated, and principled assistance, the EHF enhances the effectiveness and accountability of the humanitarian response. The EHF promotes partnership and diversity in humanitarian efforts by providing catalytic funding to a variety of humanitarian organizations to complement and support the response and their engagement in Fund governance. While addressing humanitarian needs is the primary goal of EHF, localization is recognized as a secondary aim. The EHF strives to advance localization, aligning with the Grand Bargain commitment to making principled humanitarian action “as local as possible and as international as necessary”.

Results from previous phases:  

In 2022, the EHF allocated a total $75.2M through four allocations to scale up the responses in drought affected areas, northern Ethiopia, as well as underserved areas of high needs.

In addition, the EHF allocated funding to strengthen areas of quality and effective humanitarian programming including Accountability to Affected People, Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, gender equality and disability inclusion. Moreover, the Fund strengthened partner’s capacity and preparedness to respond to suddenonset emergencies.

In 2022, 37 partners were directly supported by EHF. The EHF is committed to expanding the national NGO partners base, including women-led and women’s rights organizations, ensuring national NGO’s presence across regions and sectors.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Project partners Contract partner
United Nations Organization (UNO)
  • United Nations Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Other partners
The EHF is a humanitarian funding mechanism to INGOs, NNGOs, and UN agencies.
Coordination with other projects and actors The EHF contributes to greater coordination of humanitarian assistance by strengthening the position of the Humanitarian Coordinator and by promoting prioritization of interventions through the cluster system. At SDC level, this contribution complements other humanitarian multilateral and bilateral support in the fields of durable solutions, food security and health.
Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    3’000’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    0
Project phases Phase 2 01.01.2023 - 31.12.2026   (Current phase)