A ship washed ashore by a tsunami sits in the street

When we launch
an appeal

When we launch
an appeal

A boat washed ashore by the tsunami in Sulawesi, Indonesia, in 2018. Image: Hariandi Hafid/British Red Cross

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The DEC brings together 15 leading aid charities and its Rapid Response Network of national media and corporate partners to raise money to help people affected by disasters overseas.

Our three appeal criteria are:

  1. The disaster must be on such a scale and of such urgency as to call for swift international humanitarian assistance.
  2. The DEC’s member charities, or some of them, must be in a position to provide effective and swift humanitarian assistance at a scale to justify a national appeal.
  3. There must be reasonable grounds for concluding that a public appeal would be successful, either because of evidence of existing public sympathy for the humanitarian situation or because there is a compelling case indicating the likelihood of significant public support should an appeal be launched.

There are many disasters that the DEC does not launch appeals for.

These include disasters in countries that have the capacity to respond and make sure that people affected have their basic needs met, such as food, water and shelter.

Unfortunately there are also crises that do not attract sufficient attention or awareness to launch a DEC appeal. Nonetheless, our member charities will likely be working on the ground in these places and we always encourage donations to help them with their vital work.

Launching an appeal is expensive and comes at a cost to our partners, so we only launch when we know we can make a difference and we have a good chance of raising a significant amount of money. This ensures our fundraising is more efficient and a higher proportion of donations gets to those who need it most.

An aerial view of a displacement camp in Syria

Arial shot of Al-Wydad IDP camp in North West Syria. Photo: Abdul Sattar Al-Nasser/DEC

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We will often monitor ongoing crises that may develop into situations that warrant a DEC appeal.