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Annual Report 2022-23

Reporting on ACFID’s activities to ensure transparency and accountability


ACFID is the peak body for Australian NGOs involved in international development and humanitarian action.


ACFID works and engages with a range of strategic partners in addition to our members.


ACFID is governed by its Board, ACFID Council, and various expert and governance committees.


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Conference 2023

disruptive dynamics, inspired ideas

18-19 October 2023

Meet our Members

The ACFID membership is comprised of Australian NGOs that actively work in the international aid and development sector.

Become a member

Joining ACFID means joining an experienced and powerful mix of like-minded organisations committed to good international development practice.

Membership types & fees

ACFID has two types of organisational membership: Full Membership and Affiliate Membership.

State of the Sector

The State of the Sector Report provides a comprehensive and robust analysis of the state of the Australian aid and development sector.

NGO Aid Map

ACFID’s NGO Aid Map allows the Australian public and stakeholders to explore the work of ACFID Members around the world.

Development Practice Committee

The DPC is an expert advisory group of development practitioners leading good practice within the sector.

Our Focus

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Federal Budget 23-24 Analysis

Facts and figures on how aid is presented in this year’s annual budget

Strategic Plan

ACFID prioritises a robust response to climate change and pressure on civil society in developing countries, as well as other key priorities.

Emergency Aid

ACFID Members provide vital life-saving assistance in the immediate aftermath of an emergency.

Climate Change

Action on climate change is one of ACFID’s highest priorities, as it is an existential threat to humanity and our development.

Civil Society

Civil societies are a cornerstone of regional stability and ensure that the voices of the marginalised are heard.

Supporting NGOS

Supporting NGOs as Valuable Partners.

Inclusive & locally led development

Walking the talk on inclusive development.

Humanitarian Action

Taking humanitarian action for those in greatest need.

Elevating Development

Elevating Development to the Heart of Australia’s International Engagement.


Improving standards, practice and culture to prevent and respond to sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment.

Code of Conduct

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2022-23 ACFID Code of Conduct Review

The ACFID Code of Conduct is periodically reviewed to ensure it continues to reflect good practice and the needs of ACFID and its members.

Code of Conduct

The Code is a voluntary, self-regulatory industry code of good practice.

About the Code

Find out more about the Code of Conduct and how it operates.

Good Practice Toolkit

Overview and practical resources, and examples to support the implementation of the Code.

Spotlight on the Code

Provides a thematic ‘deep dive’ into each of the nine Quality Principles in the Code


This section outlines the responsibility to be taken by each Member to ensure compliance with the Code.

Complaints Handling

How to make a complaint and information on the Code’s independent mechanism to address concerns relating to an ACFID Members’ conduct.

Other Standards

Mapping the Code with other professional standards and principles in the humanitarian and aid sector in Australia and internationally

Home 5 News 5 ACFID Blog 5 Decolonisation and Locally Led Development – Are We Brave Enough?

Decolonisation and Locally Led Development – Are We Brave Enough?

Sep 26, 2021 | ACFID Blog

Susan Larson at Bethesda

There has been much written recently about change needed to move towards a more decolonised aid and development system with less institutional racism and more power in the hands of partners and local communities, see GibertRoche and Tarpey and Peace Direct. There are many more, which talk about the underlying drivers of inequitable power – colonisation, racism, systemic bias, discrimination and risk aversion. 

ACFID has recently established a Community of Practice on Racial Justice and both ACFID’s Advisory Committees (Development Practice Committee and the Humanitarian Reference Group) have prioritised work on localisation and locally-led development.  However, in thinking through how we might shift good-will and intention to action, it has become clear that there is a dearth of material available to share within Australian NGOs in the aid and development sector that articulates what needs to be done or has been done to make significant and meaningful changes.  While there may be experiences within organisations around change processes or examples of internal workshops that have occurred, none of this is available publicly for us to share and learn from. 

We do not want to create another piece of work articulating the barriers and incentives for reaching targets or reporting on ambition, as there are thoughtful pieces on this already (see Humanitarian Advisory Group). What we needed is support and guidance for ACFID members and their staff to get them started on their journey. 

The bold team from La Trobe University, and their Pacific partners, have articulated in fine detail questions we need to ask to reflect on our role in perpetuating or shifting practice and decolonising institutions and the mind.  They have framed it as a “two-handed pathway to change: yielding and wielding power. There are specific suggestions, which were refined during two workshops: one with ANGOs and one with Pacific Islanders, that delve into the heart of what lies ahead: “what work do white organisations and staff need to do internally, with and for themselves, to consider their own historical, positional and racial power?  The document also clarifies the discomfort that will be felt for those stepping into wielding power.  There are 2 pages of reflection questions to get us started, such as: 

At the Individual level  

for those yielding power:  

  • “Do I see my race as a factor in my personal and professional life, and my personal and professional achievements?” 

    And for those wielding power:

  • “What was my early exposure to whit authority and expertise/knowledge, and how have I internalised this?

At the organisational level  

for those yielding power:

  • Is there a power differential between locals and non-locals in the operations of my organisation in-country? If yes, how is this manifested? And what is its impact? 

    And for those wielding power:

  • Does my organisation incentivise and reward Pacific Islander staff to step into leadership and engaging robustly? How could it do this more effectively? 

The Discussion Paper then goes on to provide 19 pages of practical ideas for action at the individual, organisational and systemic level. 

We have a window of opportunity now as a sector and as a profession to yield power and personalise and institutionalise the changes we want to make.  If we do not grasp that opportunity then we risk having this same conversation in 5 years’ time, having lost the opportunity in front of us today. 

look forward to engaging with ACFID members at our Conference on the suggestions within this Discussion Paper to see how ambitious we really can be.  I encourage people to read the full document available on ACFID’s website and join the Conference session if you would like to engage.

Kate Angus

Kate Angus

Kate Angus has been ACFID’s Learning and Innovation Advisor for five and half years and has been working closely with ACFID’s Development Practice Committee, ACFID members and others on: climate change action; locally-led development and decolonisation; systems thinking and collaboration; the SDGs as a transformational agenda; strategic level monitoring, evaluation and learning; performance and impact measurement. Kate has worked in academia, in NGOs, in government and the private sector.