August 7th

4:00 PM PST

Disasters, Philanthropy, and the Localization Agenda

Recent conversations on the international stage have been focusing on how to bring the private sector, governments and civil society together to better enable local humanitarian action. The Grand Bargain, a key output from the World Humanitarian Summit, commits 30 of the biggest donors and aid organizations to providing 25 per cent of global humanitarian funding to local and national responders by 2020. This is an ambitious goal given that currently only 1 per cent of international funding goes to local actors but is crucial in disrupting the top-down power dynamic that has dictated funding trends for decades.

If you missed the live webinar, watch the recording to learn about current programs at Give2Asia and UNICEF USA that are pushing this agenda in the disaster sector, the role that private philanthropy has to play, and what donors and international grant-makers can do in helping to put more power in the hands of local actors.  



Sheena Agarwal
Development Manager of Disaster Programs, Give2Asia

Sheena leads the disaster philanthropy and climate change portfolio at Give2Asia including managing the NGO Disaster Preparedness Program – a 5-year program channeling private philanthropy to local NGOs in disaster prone countries in Asia and building their capacity to better prepare for a changing climate. Prior to joining Give2Asia, she worked extensively with USAID-funded projects in a variety of sectors including civil society strengthening, food security, and environmental management. Sheena has a Master’s Degree in International Development from American University in Washington, D.C.


Mansi Mehta
Manager of Global Cause Partnerships, UNICEF USA

Mansi works at UNICEF USA as Manager of Global Cause Partnerships. She supports the cultivation, management and growth of relationships with civil society partners including, women’s groups, diaspora organizations and service-based NGOs that are headquartered in the U.S. She advocates for UNICEF’s work around child survival and development, including health, education, child protection, HIV/AIDS, water and sanitation and children’s rights. Ms. Mehta has a Master’s in Public Health.

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Coco Vonnegut
Program Associate of Global Programs and Field Engagement, UNICEF USA

Coco Vonnegut is the focal point for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) resource mobilization at UNICEF USA. By pairing emergency response with long-term DRR measures, UNICEF is helping to keep children safe before, during and after emergencies. UNICEF pairs strategic partnerships at the community level with advocacy at all levels of government in order to sustainably reduce the risk of humanitarian emergencies. Prior to joining UNICEF USA, Coco was a William J. Clinton Fellow in Kutch, Gujarat, where she worked on rural livelihoods initiatives. She was also a U.S. Department of State Critical Language Scholar in Rajasthan. Coco has a Master’s Degree from Columbia University’s Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian & African Studies and a Business Readiness Credential from Harvard Business School’s Extension Program.

About UNICEF USA: The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has helped save more children’s lives than any other humanitarian organization, by providing health care and immunizations, safe water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more. UNICEF USA (UUSA) supports UNICEF’s work through fundraising, advocacy and education in the United States. Through working with non-governmental and civil society organizations in the United States, UUSA works to increase the engagement of all Americans who care about the well-being of the most vulnerable children. For more information, visit

About Give2Asia: Give2Asia is a U.S.-based international nonprofit organization that connects corporations, foundations, and individuals with charitable projects and social enterprises across the Asia Pacific region. Its work prioritizes local knowledge through a team of in-country advisors, local staff, and partners in each country. Since 2001, Give2Asia has granted over $300 million in Asia, building a network of over 2,000 grant recipients and 15,000 donors in 25 countries from Afghanistan to Australia.