Home » News

November, 2023
Community Trust Index

Measuring and fostering community trust in humanitarian action

Community trust is complex and requires an understanding of the factors that influence it, including social, economic, cultural and environmental aspects. Without a tool to measure trust, it is difficult for humanitarian actors to take action and develop strategies to rebuild and maintain trust. Community trust is earned, not given. Understanding community trust is essential to tailor interventions, prevent conflict, and ensure effectiveness of humanitarian action.

Background and objectives

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) Community Engagement and Accountability (CEA) Unit is establishing a Community Trust Index to help measure and foster community trust in humanitarian action.

The Index is based on a standardized questionnaire that assess community trust in competencies and values dimensions and has been recently piloted in the Red Cross and Red Crescent context in Argentina, Zambia, and the Philippines, with other countries preparing to pilot it.

The objectives of the Community Trust Index include:

  1. Measuring and tracking trust levels in humanitarian organizations and services and exploring barriers and enablers of community trust, using scientifically tested quantitative and qualitative approaches. 
  2. Developing evidence-based policy and programmatic recommendations, plans, and actions to increase community trust and enhance impact of programs and operations.
  3. Addressing the social, political, economic, cultural, and environmental factors of trust and advocating towards increased compliance, better governance, and accountability to communities.

In its future vision the Index will also assess barriers and enablers to community trust in humanitarian action more broadly using a mixed method approach, and will focus on specific thematic issues such as climate change, migration, or public health services.

Pilot phase and webinars

Last month, the CEA unit conducted two webinars to share the findings and lessons learned from the pilot phase of the Community Trust Index and convene a joint discussion to contribute for the future vision of the Community Trust Index as a tool to build trust and foster localization and effectiveness of humanitarian action.

Here are the replays of the webinars

For more confirmation, please contact Alexandra Sicotte-Levesque Alexandra | Gefra Fulane | Vincent Turmine

Recent posts

Building Trust and Resilience for Better Outbreak Response in East and Southern Africa

Building Trust and Resilience for Better Outbreak Response in East and Southern Africa

Trust in health authorities and health services before, during and after public health emergencies is critical. Where higher level of trust in health authorities exists, communities are more likely to follow public health recommendations and seek health care, resulting in more rapid and effective outbreak response.

An erosion of trust in health services and the health system more broadly can result in families being less likely to seek health care when needed, including critical preventative care such as immunisation services, undermining the public health system.

read more


This guide was developed to contribute to the Global Task Force on Cholera Control Interim Guiding Document to Support Countries for the Development of their National Cholera Plans. It focuses on the integration of community engagement approaches.
This guidance has been developed for use by those involved in designing, developing and implementing a National Cholera Plan for Control or Elimination (NCPs) at country level.

read more