16 February 2016

SINGAPORE – AVPN and AVPN member, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), hosted a roundtable discussion centered on the recently launched Humanitarian Impact Bond (HIB). The afternoon began with a presentation on the HIB by Yves Daccord, Director-General of the ICRC which was followed by an engaging dialogue with the audience.

CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC

Daccord began by giving an overview of the current state of conflict zones and illustrating the fact that “over 90 million people suffer from physical disability yet only 10% of those actually have access to physical rehabilitation services”. This was one of the main drivers behind the launch of the HIB by the ICRC and the Belgian government. It is hoped that this model will help to increase the scale and social impact of inclusive physical rehabilitation services globally.

CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC Daccord outlined the value proposition, pointing out key stakeholders and their responsibilities and flow of funds. He also talked about investment characteristics, measurements used to evaluate success, and potential risk areas. The ICRC plans to construct new rehabilitation centers across five different regions simultaneously over a period of five years. The new centers will be established in “fragile environments” that currently do not have any form of rehabilitation services, emphasized Daccord.

Questions and discussions then ensued with the audience. Members were concerned with the impact assessment process, potential social investors, and the proposed financial returns. Tan Shuo Yan, Regional Social Impact Associate from Grab, questioned ICRC’s existing measurement methods and proposed as an alternative, a more sustainable metric would be able to illustrate the model’s success. Kevin Moon, Project Manager at BoP Hub, raised possible sources of potential social investors, while Matt Zhou, Executive Director at Equity Capital, expressed positive interest from an investor’s perspective but was keen to see a multi-year evaluation in place.

DSC_2681The roundtable discussion proved to be a great opportunity for the ICRC to test their newest initiative as well as to gather constructive feedback from key industry players. The session helped enhance members’ understanding of ICRC’s ongoing efforts.