The network aimed to help better coordinate the emergency response and rehabilitation activities of INGOs in the affected areas. In June 2003, a workshop was organised in Islamabad to discuss the viability of an NGO coordination body continuing at a national level and it was agreed to form the Pakistan Humanitarian Forum (PHF) under the leadership of a chairperson.
PHF was mandated to collectively represent INGOs with the Government of Pakistan and UN humanitarian agencies. It was also intended to strengthen coordination, information sharing and advocacy efforts of the humanitarian sector.
For the next eight years, PHF became increasingly active with additional demands for coordination, information-sharing and collective advocacy being required. The workload for the annually elected chairperson became untenable due to the extensive demands. In 2010, PHF took the decision to establish a permanent Secretariat with dedicated staff to coordinate, support and deliver core PHF services.
The Secretariat is accountable to the membership through an annually elected Executive Committee (ExComm) and Chair. The PHF Country Coordinator, Chair and Executive Committee represent PHF and take key decisions on action and priorities. Past PHF Chairpersons have been from World Vision, Islamic Relief, Church World Service, Oxfam, International Rescue Committee, Catholic Relief Services, Concern Worldwide, Tearfund and Action Aid.