Long-term support to UNRWA’s reform

Progetto concluso

Through this contribution, Switzerland enables UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) to pursue the implementation of two key reform areas from its Medium-Term Strategy 2016-21, namely: the Resource Mobilization Strategy and the Protection Framework. These reforms will improve UNRWA’s ability to deliver its core services by stabilizing the Agency’s financial situation and by strengthening its capacities to deliver its protection mandate.

Paese/Regione Tema Periodo Budget
Territorio palestinese occupato
Primary education
Assistenza sanitaria primaria
01.01.2018 - 30.06.2021
CHF  6’668’468

Palestine refugees in the Near East face a complex human development and protection crisis. Poverty levels and protection threats are rising, exacerbated by the protracted crisis in the Gaza Strip and the conflict in Syria.

Despite this challenging operating environment, UNRWA has made significant progress in terms of quality and cost effectiveness of its services as a result of internal reforms. Recurrent deficits in its Programme Budget, which covers UNRWA’s core services, risk jeopardizing these achievements and represent serious risks for refugees, UNRWA and the region as a whole.

Stabilizing UNRWA’s financial situation and strengthening its protection interventions is essential to sustain the human development and protection needs of Palestine refugees.

Obiettivi The overall goal is to support UNRWA’s long-term reform process, thus enabling the Agency to provide better quality and more efficient services to Palestine refugees.
Gruppi target
  • Resource Mobilization: 5.3 Mio Palestine refugees registered in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and Gaza.
  • Protection: the most vulnerable Pal. refugees.
  • Both reforms: 30’000 UNRWA employees (91% Palestine refugees themselves) and the communities in which they live.
Effetti a medio termine
  • UNRWA’s ability to carry out its mandate is safeguarded by securing adequate and predictable financial resources; and
  • Refugees’ rights under international law are increasingly protected and promoted.

Risultati principali attesi:  

  • Additional funds are attracted from donors, private sector/individual donors and International Financial Institutions; predictability is increased (e.g. multi-year agreements); and UNRWA is able to bridge the 2018-20 deficits.
  • Protection policies and guidelines are operationalized at field level.

Risultati fasi precedenti:  

  • The Enterprise Resource Planning System strengthened UNRWA decision-making with a state-of-the-art platform that integrates finance, procurement and human resources (Phase 1).
  • The Resource Mobilization Strategy enabled UNRWA to bridge the 2014-16 Programme Budgets deficits by increasing contributions from traditional UNRWA donors (+USD 11 Mio from 2015 to 2016) and the private sector (+2); by confirming Arab countries’ commitments (+50 Mio); and by securing contributions from new donors (Russia and India).
  • Through e-health, electronic files replaced paper records generating improvements in quality, efficiency and cost effectiveness (Phase 2).
  • Protection was established as Strategic Outcome 1 in the Medium Term Strategy 2016-21 and key policy and guidelines were developed (Phase 3).

Direzione/Ufficio responsabile DSC
Credito Cooperazione allo sviluppo
Partner del progetto Partner contrattuale
Organizzazione delle Nazioni Unite (ONU)
  • Agenzia delle Nazioni Unite per il soccorso e l'occupazione dei profughi palestinesi nel Vicino Oriente

Altri partner
The 30 members of UNRWA’s Advisory Commission (donors and host governments); and UN Agencies involved in protection.
Coordinamento con altri progetti e attori The intervention complements Switzerland’s multi-year un-earmarked contribution to UNRWA’s Programme Budget (Humanitarian Aid credit line). Switzerland seeks coordination with like-minded donors and host countries on matters related to the reforms.
Budget Fase in corso Budget Svizzera CHF    6’668’468 Budget svizzero attualmente già speso CHF    6’668’468
Fasi del progetto Fase 5 01.07.2021 - 30.06.2023   (Completed)

Fase 4 01.01.2018 - 30.06.2021   (Completed)

Fase 3 01.01.2016 - 31.12.2017   (Completed) Fase 2 01.01.2015 - 31.12.2015   (Completed) Fase 1 01.12.2013 - 31.12.2014   (Completed)