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Q3 - 2024 Humanitarian Shelter Coordination Training (Master level short course)

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HSCT Q3 2024

This master’s-level short course in Humanitarian Shelter Coordination, the Global Shelter Cluster’s flagship training, is offered by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in partnership with the Centre for Development and Emergency Practice (CENDEP) at Oxford Brookes University.

This course draws upon IFRC’s and UNHCR’s successful leadership of the Global Shelter Cluster, the inter-agency mechanism to coordinate humanitarian shelter sector preparedness and response at both global and country levels. It aims to equip participants with the skills required to coordinate a shelter response in a humanitarian crisis caused by disasters, conflicts, or a combination of both. It provides participants with an overview of the humanitarian reform process and the transformative agenda, the inter-agency cluster approach, the role of the Shelter Cluster and the principles and practice of shelter coordination in natural disasters.

At the end of the course, participants will have acquired strategic and practical knowledge of shelter coordination policies, methods, tools, and procedures in the humanitarian response system and are prepared to apply these in the context of a humanitarian crisis. 

  • Demonstrate a depth of knowledge of the main foundations, principles, processes, and complexities of humanitarian shelter coordination in disasters.
  • Develop an inter-agency shelter response strategy using current humanitarian shelter and settlements standards, principles, and approaches.
  • Effectively participate in shelter coordination teams in response to disasters and conflicts at the country level, utilizing the most current knowledge, tools, and good practices at the forefront of the discipline
  • Apply leadership and coordination skills effectively and appropriately to a professional standard for different audiences in the field of humanitarian practice.

Tuition Awards

In memory of Graham Saunders, former Global Shelter Cluster Coordinator, the IFRC will support one participant by covering the course fee. Those willing to benefit from this opportunity must indicate so in the online application form. The criteria for selection include number of years of experience, cluster experience and languages. Nationals from less-developed countries and staff or volunteers from the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement will be prioritized.

The Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance of USAID supports the participation of local and national actors through the provision of scholarships covering tuition fees and travel expenses. For this edition, up to three representatives of local and national actors will be able to benefit from this scholarship.

Course Outline

This course covers the following topics will be delivered through the online and face-to-face components:

  • The Humanitarian Reform process and the Transformative Agenda
  • The cluster approach and the Shelter Cluster
  • The Global Shelter Cluster methodology for shelter coordination at the country level
  • Fundamentals of shelter response programming and minimum standards
  • Inter-agency disaster response appeal and financing mechanisms
  • Inter-agency coordinated assessments
  • Information management
  • Inter-agency shelter response and advocacy strategies
  • Leadership and coordination skills
  • Inter-cluster coordination
  • Core cluster functions

Period of Study

The course has two phases:

  1. First phase: Tutored distance learning: This will take place during a period of five weeks from 16 September - 20 October 2024 and participants will study through the online Red Cross Red Crescent e-learning platform. This first phase deals with most of the theoretical basis of the course.
  2. Second phase: A 6-day, face-to-face workshop from 11-16 November 2024 will be held in Geneva, Switzerland. The face-to-face workshop is based on a scenario that simulates the deployment to and coordination of an evolving emergency.

Practical Information

Who can apply?

Individuals working in the humanitarian and shelter sectors for the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, United Nations agencies, non-governmental agencies, governments, in particular agencies or institutions actively involved in the inter-agency shelter coordination at the global or country levels. The course is also open to individuals seeking to advance their understanding of and expertise in the field of inter-agency, humanitarian coordination.

How to apply?

Applications are accepted through this link. To complete your application please send your CV to Applications without CVs will not be considered. Applications for the course should be submitted before midnight (GMT+1) on 11 August 2024 with the agreement of your employer (reference) if this applies to you.

Language of instruction

The language of instruction is English.


The fees are 1,975 CHF (Swiss francs) per participant. It does not include any costs related to accommodation and travel for the face-to-face workshop. The fees are due once you have been accepted to the course.

Credits awarded

Certified master’s-level credit rated course by Oxford Brookes University (10 UK master’s-level credits- CATS, equivalent to 5 European master’s-level credits- ECTS)

More information

If you have a specific enquiry, please address it to and your query will be forwarded to the most appropriate person. Please consult also the course flyer, available