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Humanitarian Operations Programme

The essential, go-to guide and hands-on training for anyone looking to develop a successful career in the humanitarian sector.

Building on more than a decade of experience, the aim of the Humanitarian Operations Programme (HOP) is to strengthen the capacity and capability of regional and national actors who work, or aspire to work, as part of a humanitarian response.

It is not aimed at staff with extensive humanitarian experience, but rather at individuals who wish to gain an understanding of the fundamental principles of humanitarian action.

Covering the essential elements of emergency response deemed vital for humanitarian workers and preparing humanitarians by developing their knowledge, skills and attitudes, the HOP’s key drivers are localisation, contextualisation, scalability and affordability.

The learning is based on Core Humanitarian Standards and on building key behaviours identified in the Core Humanitarian Competencies Framework. Embracing a blended learning approach, the programme incorporates face-to-face, distance and digital learning methodologies. The design of the HOP considers the need for the programme to be relevant in different contexts, countries and regions, so as to reflect the complex and multi-faceted humanitarian landscape staff operate in.


Aims of the Programme:

  • To develop an understanding of all areas of humanitarian work by providing a framework for coordinated response
  • To develop the behaviours, skills and knowledge required to operate effectively in a rapid onset emergency as part of a first phase response team
  • To gain the theoretical knowledge and practical experience needed to build a career in humanitarian work

Course breakdown


The HOP Fundamentals is an open-access, self-paced catalogue of qualityassured and interactive learning modules, curated by partner providers or created by Save the Children. It is one of three levels of the HOP.


Fundamentals has been carefully designed to provide a streamlined learning journey which covers the key topics related to the delivery of quality emergency responses.


Click to access HOP Fundamentals:

Please note that you will need to create a Kaya Connect account if you don’t already have one.


The Core Training is a five-day residential training encompassing two days of interactive workshops (Four workshops to pick out of the below list):

  • Accountability in Emergencies
  • Cross-cultural Team Working
  • Gender Equality in Humanitarian Responses
  • Leadership Essentials
  • Safeguarding in Emergencies

And a three-day desk-based scenario (inclusing a teaching session on the essentials of Porposal Writing) during which participants deliver an early response simulation in a condensed timeframe.

If your organisation is interested in running a HOP Core training, please contact for additional information.


Accessible upon completion of a required number of HOP Fundamentals modules and of the Core training, the Response Simulation blends learning sessions, mentoring and experiential simulation training during which participants leverage all the learning they have gone through on their HOP journey, navigating the complexities of a fictional emergency response.

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