UNHCR has established standard templates for external update documents that field operations and regional bureaux produce to provide operational information on the work of UNHCR and partners in a given country or region.
These templates should be used to report on the operational context, identified needs, activities undertaken, number of people assisted, achievements and impact, challenges and funding situation.
When and for what purpose
The most important external updates in the initial stages of an emergency operation are:
- Inter-agency operational update; to be issued when UNHCR leads an inter-agency refugee response.
- UNHCR Operational Update: to be issued for UNHCR's programme.
Emergency operations should start issuing external operational updates as soon as possible following the declaration of an emergency (in principle within one-two weeks). They should then be produced on a weekly basis during an emergency's early stages.
The purpose of the external update documents is to inform external audiences, notably donors and other agencies, about the response of UNHCR and partners to a given emergency.
The updates are circulated with Permanent Missions in Geneva and donor capitals and are posted on Global Focus website, refworld.org and UNHCR.org.
It is important to use the standard templates to ensure harmonized visual identity and content of external documents across the organization.
How to use the template?
UNHCR employs seven external update templates. The updates can be focused on a specific operation or report on several operations in a region affected by a common emergency. They can report on the broader inter-agency refugee response led by UNHCR, or on UNHCR's operations only.
The templates contain instructions on the information expected in each section. Prior to dissemination the updates should be reviewed by the responsible Regional Bureau and DRRM's Regional Focal Point.
Inter-Agency Operational Update
This template should be used to report on inter-agency activities in a single refugee operation (e.g. inter-agency activities in Lebanon). These updates should contain developments related to all partners engaged in the response: UN agencies, NGOs, governmental agencies, etc.
Inter-Agency Regional Operational Update
This template should be used to report on inter-agency activities for a given regional emergency operation (e.g. inter-agency response to the Syria refugee situation). These updates should contain developments related to all partners engaged in the response: UN agencies, NGOs, governmental agencies, etc.
UNHCR Operational Update
This template should be used for reporting on UNHCR's programme in a specific operation (e.g. UNHCR operation in Burkina Faso).
UNHCR Regional Operational Update
This template should be used for reporting on UNHCR's activities in several operations affected by a common crisis (e.g. UNHCR's response to the Mali situation in Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania and Niger) or in several operations that fall within the same region (e.g. West Africa).
UNHCR Fact Sheet Fact sheets are produced by field operations to provide an overview of the operation for external audiences.
UNHCR Thematic Update
Field operations and regional bureaux may produce thematic updates on specific sectors or projects they want to highlight. These updates can refer to activities undertaken in one or several operations (e.g. cross-border activities, education programmes).
UNHCR Generic Update For other briefing documents that provide an update on an operation or a specific activity that do not fall under one of the above categories, UNHCR generic update template should be used.
- For information on use of external update templates, contact the Donor Relations and Resource Mobilization Service (DRRM) at the Division of External Relations (DER): [email protected].
- For information on funding, contact the DRRM's Regional Donor Focal Point at DRRM responsible for your region. The list of focal points is available on Intranet.
- For mapping information and questions relating to population data, contact the Division of Programme Support and Management, Field Information and Coordination Support Section: [email protected].