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Emergency Procedures

The Emergency Procedures support the delivery of principled, timely, quality and child-centered humanitarian response in any crises with humanitarian consequences. They are the operational hand of the Core Commitments for Children to ensure that UNICEF can continue to deliver for children in emergencies for years to come.  

They offer clear mandatory actions and streamlined steps to support rapid decision-making, flexible resource allocation, continuous learning, and greater accountability in humanitarian action and advocacy.


















They apply to all emergencies, replace the previous L3/L2 SSOPs and supersede every single rule, SOP, and process developed at the local and regional levels.



Click here to access UNICEF Emergency Procedures, and here to access UNICEF Guidance Handbook in L1, L2 and L3 Emergency.

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Click here to access the Arabic, French and Spanish versions.

Corporate Emergency Activation Procedure

The determination of an emergency is made based on scale; urgency; complexity; and capacity of Regional Office (RO) and Country Offices (COs) affected by the crisis.


  • Level-3 Emergency Response: The Executive Director declares that organisation-wide mobilization is needed to scale up and respond and appoints a Global Emergency Coordinator (GEC). RO support to the CO is enhanced.


  • Level-2 Emergency Response: CO needs additional support from other parts of the organisation (HQ, RO and other COs) to scale up and respond to the crisis. The Regional Director (RD) will provide leadership and RO support is enhanced.


  • Level-1 Emergency Response: Any emergency with a stand-alone HAC appeal - which is not an L3 or L2 emergency - is an L1 emergency.


Click to access the UNICEF Corporate Emergency Activation Procedures (CEAPS) for L2s here and for L3s here.

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