top of page

03 Core Humanitarian Principles

Indigo Volunteers and the grassroots humanitarian organisations that we support all base our work around five core humanitarian principles. Our volunteers are therefore also expected to understand and adhere to them.


means that human suffering must be addressed wherever it is found, with particular attention to the most vulnerable.


means the autonomy of humanitarian objectives from political, economic, military or other motivations.



means that humanitarian aid must not favour any side in an armed conflict or other dispute.

means that humanitarian aid must be provided solely on the basis of need, without discrimination.

Do No Harm

obliges humanitarian actors to prevent and mitigate any negative impact of their actions on affected populations. While humanitarian aid is intended to bring relief, it often has the potential to intensify problems, raise conflict between different actors on the ground, cause longer-term negative consequences and, overall, do more harm on the account of the provided good.


At Indigo, we see a strong link between the Do No Harm principle and the concept of Responsible Volunteering. This standard helps us stay centred around the needs, preferences and aspirations of  recipient communities. Read more about Responsible Volunteering here.

Learn more through this short training

"Introduction to the Core Humanitarian Standard"
02 Location Profiles
04 Resources to Become a Responsible Volunteer
bottom of page