4. What not to do: Do no harm and other common mistakes

  • Never put people at greater risk of harm. Protection and rights promotion can be highly sensitive, and can do more harm than good if inappropriately designed and managed. Protection approaches should always carefully consider the risks and ensure that any strategies implemented don’t put beneficiaries at greater risk of harm.
  • Don’t implement relief programmes without conducting a protection analysis. Poorly planned or implemented relief programmes can create protection risks and cause harm to beneficiaries, such as creating opportunities for aid to be used to abuse power.
  • If documenting rights abuses, ensure that documentation processes do not put people at risk by identifying individuals. In some cases, written documentation may not be possible and may increase risk to individuals, the community and CARE staff.

Don’t jeopardise CARE’s presence in a country with poorly targeted or implemented advocacy. In complex and politically sensitive operations, ensure that CARE’s advocacy strategy is appropriate to the context to help achieve advocacy objectives, and to enable CARE to continue to be present to implement important relief operations and to witness.