6. Ongoing situation monitoring and information sharing

The Safety and Security Officer, with input and/or participation from a diverse cross-section of the CARE team and key actors, can help gain a perspective about the risks faced by CARE. On a routine basis the SSO will:

  • analyse the general evolution of the security situation
  • regularly monitor the quality of CARE’s work, image and relationship with local communities, authorities, other NGOs, beneficiaries, etc.
  • keep track of incidents or other relevant developments, and setbacks within the environment and situation
  • maintain and develop an extensive network of interlocutors and partners
  • ensure that CARE staff and management are regularly updated on the general security conditions
  • issue and communicate policies and procedures
  • inform teams in the field of any changes to operating conditions as quickly as possible (e.g. changes to no-go areas or events that will affect security).

The Safety and Security Officer should also work through various scenarios for anticipating changes in security conditions and possible future triggers for insecurity. These should be developed into contingency planning (refer to section 7.3).

Information gathering and analysis is aimed at understanding the risks and threats that CARE may confront in the completion of its mission. Transparency and common sense are paramount when undertaking such analysis, because CARE’s sole objective is to ensure it is in a position to intervene safely in a given environment. It should not suggest that CARE is involved in intelligence gathering or activities not directly linked with its mandate.

Tools for information gathering and sharing

  • open sources (academic and professional studies, specialised web sources, local and international media)
  • networking with other humanitarian agencies, local authorities, UN agencies, non-state actors, experts, representatives of the civil society, beneficiaries, etc.
  • direct observation
  • focus group discussions.

Communicating and sharing information with the CARE team

  • Information sharing and consulting with other team members/Lead Member about main security concerns should be continuous throughout the assessment and operations.

All information related to security (security guidelines, procedures, evacuations procedures, decisions, use of telecommunications equipment and communication procedures) has to be managed and easily accessible to all persons concerned.