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International Aid Transparency

Access information about aid spending

In 2012 we became a publisher of the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI). This voluntary, multi-stakeholder initiative aims to make information about aid spending easier to find, use, and compare.

This agreement unites us with donor and developing country governments, multilateral institutions and other international NGOs in agreeing to meet our transparency commitments in a coherent, consistent way.

The IATI standard provides a common, open format for sharing aid information. Through it we publish timely, detailed, and comparable information on our spending that is accessible to all our donors and supporters. Publishing this information to the IATI standard makes us more effective and accountable as an organisation.

View our spending data on the IATI website

Seven-year-old Sammy practices the alphabet with help from his mum, Josephine, as part of our national literacy programme in Rwanda.

Seven-year-old Sammy practices the alphabet with help from his mum, Josephine, as part of our national literacy programme in Rwanda.

Frequently asked questions

We publish all spending of grants received from institutional donors such as the UK government, European Union, and UN institutions. As around two-thirds of our total income comes from institutional sources – with the UK government’s Department for International Development (DfID) our single biggest donor – publication of these details gives visibility to our relationship with key donors.

Save the Children is also funded by our corporate partners, community groups and individual supporters. Our Open Information Policy contains detailed guidance on how you can access information on these sources, and on why it may sometimes be impossible for us to share this for security, privacy or confidentiality reasons.


Our data is extracted from our grant/finance management systems each quarter. As it is taken directly and unaudited, it offers the highest possible level of transparency on our activities. The IATI standard emphasises the importance of publishing timely data reflective of the fast-changing nature of Save the Children’s programmes.

This does, however, mean it may differ from the high-quality, audited information that we share through our Annual Report. For example, our exclusions policy means that the financial information found in our IATI data and Annual Report will not correspond, and for a comprehensive overview the latter document remains the most appropriate source.  The figures we publish through IATI should be seen as a snapshot of our complex work at a certain point in time, and as part of Save the Children’s wider commitment to organisational transparency and accountability.


Our record shows headline information on our hundreds of institutional grants, including country location, project description and category (ie, health, education), planned start and end dates, and budget/expenditure.

We also show information about the results of our work. We published results for the first time in December 2017 for some of our DFID-funded work and are continuing to increase the range of activities for which we publish results.


Save the Children delivers life-saving assistance to children whose need is greatest, wherever they are. This means we work in some of the most complex, insecure and fast-changing environments in the world, and as such the safety and security of our people and partners is paramount.

Any information that may compromise this – and merely confirming our presence in certain locations may be enough to do so – is excluded from our IATI record. As a rights-based organisation we have a commitment to safeguard children, especially those with whom we are in contact.

Therefore, we will not publish any information that could identify an individual child. More information can be found in our Child Safeguarding Policy. We may exclude any politically or culturally sensitive information that may hinder our ability to operate in certain locations, including information that could put at risk the safety and security of beneficiaries, staff and partners. We may also exclude data that we cannot share for privacy, confidentiality, or wider regulatory or statutory reasons.


We work hard to deliver world-class programmes for children. Our main objective is to ensure that at the end of a project we have spent all donor money as effectively and efficiently as possible to see immediate and lasting change for children. We continually aim to improve how we manage donor money. Given the varied governmental, institutional and civil society structures in which we work, across our programmes – and indeed the wider sector – it is fairly common for delays to occur between the confirmation of funding arrangements and the recording of transactions in our national-level financial systems.

In the meantime, a substantial amount of preparatory work in other areas will be taking place. Also, our rate of spending will vary according to the project design. Large transactions may not necessarily occur early in the project cycle, and the amount we spend in any given quarter is likely to vary. Our primary aim is to successfully implement our programme spending by the close of a grant. There are a range of other potential reasons for delays. External changes outside our control, such as the onset of civil/political unrest, a humanitarian emergency, or conflict, will fundamentally change our operating environment and the spending needed to operate within it.