HumanSurge - People responding together

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Timeliness is key during a humanitarian emergency. HumanSurge improves the quality and time-effectiveness of humanitarian responses, connecting available aid experts in real-time with organisations who respond to disasters globally. Importantly HumanSurge transfers verified skills, work-experiences and endorsements into a shared trust network. Thus enhancing the rapid on-demand mobilization of verified local and international experts to the ultimate benefit of disaster-affected populations.

An open platform solution towards a trust-based network of qualified disaster responders to improve the timeliness of humanitarian response.

Project description

What problem are you trying to solve?
There is a global disconnect between organisations responding to disasters and available and qualified humanitarian professionals, leading to inefficiencies and delays in the response. Human Resources departments are unaware of who is available, and which verified the qualifications and experiences individuals have. Moreover, professionals (such as logisticians, nurses, doctors, water engineers and food security experts) lack a dedicated place to signal their availability to the sector at-large. There is insufficient standby capacity, and those available are typically operating in silos rather than in a collaborative manner. Accelerated recruitment processes are required to ensure all humanitarian crisis have an adequate, timely and quality response. The UN estimates that 26 million people are driven into poverty each year as a result of disasters. For every day of delay in a response, basic needs remain unmet and human lives are put at risk.

What is your solution to this problem?
HumanSurge increases the local and international disaster response capacity, reducing time and costs of the recruitment processes through an enhanced candidate search and screening. HumanSurge is:
● Online and user-based: Professionals keep their profile and availability up-to-date and organisations connect in real-time and on-demand.
● Shared: Each profile verification and validation adds more value for all recruiters and reduces response times further.
● Collaborative: peer-2-peer verification of experiences and endorsements built towards a network of trusted aid workers; aggregate recruiters´ actions enable us to enhance matching capability; professionals can request an employer review, which builds their profile.
● User-friendly: HumanSurge gathers the professionals’ data in a standardized way, allowing recruiters to search and filter with sector-specific indicators.
HumanSurge reduces the negative impact of disasters, ensuring fewer people are driven into poverty as a result.

What is your latest update on your innovation?
After initially enhancing candidate search, attention shifted to also improve candidate screening through strategic partnerships. This was complemented by identity verification and line manager reference checks (manually, as a pilot). Now, we are in the final stages of a peer-2-peer verification system, which will automate the reference checks in a scalable manner, while functioning as an underlying growth hack generating new registrations organically.

HumanSurge continues to strive to become a self-sustainable social impact initiative, supported by dedicated humanitarians and benevolent supporters. The initial annual NGO subscription model has been complemented with a success fee option (charging costs to the project rather than HR budgets), enable each organisation to opt for the package which best fits their needs. Importantly, a free package for local NGOs, supports the Grand Bargain ´localisation of aid´ agenda, while functioning as a qualified lead generator.


Jorge Vilchis

Loek Peeters


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