Camp management
Read caption Photo: Christian Jepsen/NRC

Camp management

Our camp management programmes seek to ensure the protection of displaced populations and of their rights, to promote their participation, self-sufficiency and dignity, and to ensure provision of assistance and access to services.

People reached in 2021

A total of


people benefitted from our camp management work

We work in camps, in dispersed displacement settings, and within host communities in non-camp settings. We do not promote camps. Camps are not long-term or sustainable solutions – they are a last resort. For this reason, our camp management portfolio includes different approaches, such as assisting displaced people living with host communities. To carry out camp management activities, NRC must be mandated by the government or agency responsible for these settlements.

Our expertise in camp management

Camp management core functions include coordinating and monitoring assistance and protection, setting up and supporting governance and community participation mechanisms, managing and disseminating information, providing multisector feedback mechanisms, and maintaining infrastructure.

We facilitate two-way communication by strengthening the participation of community representatives in decision-making processes, including vulnerable individuals and groups, and developing complaints and feedback mechanisms. We facilitate camp set-ups and upgrades and, where applicable, the maintenance of communal infrastructure.

Our approach differs according to the needs of our beneficiaries, the type of settlement, the phase of the camp life cycle, the humanitarian response capacity, the humanitarian architecture and the actors on the ground.

Four thematic areas

Camp management
In some contexts, displaced people are gathered in formal camps (planned camps, collective centres, transit centres, reception centres). We can assume the role of camp manager if requested by the authorities or mandated agencies. We carry out core camp management functions in these settings.

Mobile Site Management (MSM)
Sometimes, displaced people are gathered in small, dispersed settlements (self-settled camps, rural self-settlements, unmanaged collective centres). These are often not recognised by authorities. In these situations, we adopt an MSM response. Core camp management functions are done through MSM teams. Mobile teams cover several settlements.

Urban Displacement and Outside of Camps (UDOC)
In contexts where displaced people live with host communities, particularly in urban environments, we provide some camp management core functions. We seek to strengthen, not replace, existing governance structures. UDOC programmes are defined by the adoption of an area-based programming approach.

Capacity building/support
When the responsibility for camp management services lies with another designated actor (national authorities, the UN, displaced populations, NGOs, civil society), we can provide operational support or capacity building.


NRC's camp management house

NRC's camp management house illustrates our holistic approach: assistance and protection underpinned by laws and participation.

NRC's camp management house illustrates our holistic approach: assistance and protection underpinned by international law and participation.