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ReliefWeb - Updates

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    Source: International Organization for Migration
    Country: Japan, Somalia

    A health centre and a system of mobile clinics established by IOM and Puntland’s Ministry of Health in Garowe have started to benefit some 10,000 residents of the Jowle settlement for internally displaced persons (IDPs) located on the outskirts of the city.

    The Japanese-funded health facilities, which opened in May 2013, provide essential primary health care services for displaced families, including routine consultations, safe motherhood services, nutrition, control of communicable diseases and immunization (EPI).

    The most common illnesses among the IDPs are respiratory infectious diseases, urinary tract infections and acute watery diarrhoea, especially among children. Before the facilities were introduced, the IDPs had to walk for six kilometres to the city to receive free healthcare services or seek out often unaffordable private clinics.

    In order to build the capacity of the government’s health system, IOM hired staff from the Ministry of Health and provided them with training and technical support. In Somalia health facilities are often owned and managed by NGOs.

    “In the past I developed complications that the traditional midwife was not able to resolve. I was in pain, but could not afford to go to the private hospital several kilometres away. Now I can go to the midwife at the mobile clinic,” says Mariam Nur Salah, 42, who lives at Jowle.

    More than 3,000 people have already benefited since the new services were launched two months ago, averaging some 75 patients per day. A healthcare facility of a similar size in the region receives around seven or eight patients a day or some 150 patients a month.

    “We value IOM’s collaboration with Puntland’s Ministry of Health in providing services to the most vulnerable people in IDP settlements. The services reduce the burden on the government hospital in the city and this initiative should be a model for future health facilities,” says Dr Abdirizak Hersi Hassan, the Director General of Puntland’s Ministry of Health.

    IOM, in collaboration with the Ministry, is establishing similar health facilities and mobile clinics in other locations in Somalia and is expected to eventually expand the programme to reach another 100,000 IDPs, migrants, returnees and pastoralists, as well as affected host communities.

    For more information, please contact Hussein Hassan or Dr. Samir Hadjiabduli at IOM Somalia, Tel. +252 907794975, +252 24686285, Email: hhassan@iom.int or Email: shadjiabduli@iom.int.


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    Source: Norwegian Refugee Council
    Country: Afghanistan, Haiti, Mali, Myanmar, Pakistan, Philippines, Somalia, Sudan, World, South Sudan (Republic of)

    The NORCAP standby roster strengthens the UN, international organizations and governments' efforts to build resilience and respond to crisis. With 149 person-years in the field last year, NORCAP’s contribution in 2012 was the largest in the history of the roster.

    in 2012, NORCAP sent experts on 348 missions around the world, amounting to 1784 person-months - or 149 years - in the field. The main priorities were support to UN and national government's responses to the Syrian refugee crisis and the conflict in Mali.

    In total, NORCAP experts worked in 51 countries and for 21 partner organizations and monitoring missions. This included deployments to the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH), to UN organisations in South Sudan and Yemen, as well as responses to natural disasters in the Horn of Africa, the Sahel belt, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Haiti, and the Philippines.

    You can read more about NORCAP's activities and our geographic and thematic priorities, in our 2012 annual report.


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    Source: Danish Refugee Council
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali

    Since February 2013, The Danish Refugee Council (DRC) has deployed its emergency teams to assist the Malian population affected by the conflict.

    According to UNHCR, the crisis in Mali has left 176,986 refugees seeking for protection in neighboring countries. Inside Mali, 301,027 IDPs have left their home to flee the conflict attacking the northern part of the country. 49,945 refugees arrived in Burkina Faso and are surviving in host families and camps organized to this purpose.

    “As the humanitarian space and access are gradually opening in the North of Mali, the needs won’t cease to grow,” DRC Country Director in Mali, Dominique Koffy says.

    Humanitarian assistance and protection monitoring including border monitoring with Burkina Faso have been the main activities for DRC in this mission. DRC has concentrated the resources in the North East of Mali in the regions of Mopti, Gao and Tombouctu and in the Northern regions of Burkina Faso.

    Following an exploratory mission in late December 2012, DRC has managed to open the Mali and Burkina Faso Missions with DANIDA funding. The presence of protection teams in these volatile bordering areas has allowed to gradually gathering relevant information on protection risks in order to elaborate adequate responses for relevant actors, local authorities, UN and other humanitarian actors.

    “In just two months of presence in Mali, DRC has assured the co-lead for the protection cluster in order to support the accountability of the cluster management and diversifying the expertise brought by the civil society. DRC is also the lead agency for the protection monitoring working group,” says Dominique Koffy.

    DRC has intervened in areas where the humanitarian assistance is barely non-existent and where - thanks to its experience in the region on protection monitoring - relief is distributed following on vulnerability assessments. To date, almost 3000 people have participate in different DRC activities.

    "During our mission in the North of Mali we met a man who has lost his speech as his wife was kidnapped, raped by an armed group, and then finally returned to his house. Probably many cases like this one are unknown and not taken care as we are not present and adequate care is very rare," says regional protection manager, Alberta Santini.

    DRC will keep on reinforcing its integrated protection and assistance activities and expanding its geographical scope in the net coming months in order to assist the most affected populations in the endeavor to find concrete durable solution.


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Kenya, Somalia
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    ATTACK ON UNCC

    On 19 June, Al Shabaab carried out a deadly assault on the United Nations Common Compound in Mogadishu, killing one international staff member, three contractors and four Somali security guards. Several Somali civilians were also killed and wounded in the attack. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Somalia Nicholas Kay condemned the attack and reiterated the UN's commitment and resolve to keep up its support to the Somali government and people


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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan (Republic of)

    ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, July 12 (UNHCR) – UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres on Friday praised Ethiopia for providing shelter to more than 400,000 refugees while supporting the country's efforts to help neighbouring Somalia emerge from war and rebuild.

    On the third and final leg of a regional tour that has also taken him to Somalia and Kenya, Guterres lauded Ethiopia for its open border and asylum policy and said it was "a pillar of refugee protection."

    UNHCR works with the Ethiopian Home Ministry's Administration for Refugee and Returnee Affairs (ARRA) and other partners to help some 240,000 Somali refugees in eastern Ethiopia's Dollo Ado and Jijiga areas. Ethiopia also hosts more than 73,000 Eritreans, 62,000 South Sudanese and over 30,000 Sudanese.

    The refugee agency and ARRA have developed guidelines to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian assistance inside Somalia, where signs of peace are emerging for the first time in more than two decades. These cross-border efforts aim to provide basic aid and services to people in stable areas.

    Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, in a meeting Friday with Guterres, emphasized the opportunity to build a "people to people" bridge between Ethiopia and Somalia and the need to urgently invest in Somalia to create basic infrastructure and services. At the same time, he said, Ethiopia would help more Somali refugees to obtain skills to enable them to be productive when the time comes to return home.

    There are also plans under way to expand a self-sufficiency programme allowing skilled refugees to work outside camps. Under this project, some 1,200 Eritrean refugees attend universities. Guterres called the programme "remarkable" after visiting a group of graduates.

    An innovative project with the IKEA Foundation is also working to develop self-reliance skills for Somali refugees and local communities in and around Dollo Ado, Kobe and Hilaweyn camps.

    Guterres was visiting the region to promote a global initiative to find solutions for Somali refugees. As the country hosting the second largest Somali refugee population after Kenya, and as an influential neighbour, Ethiopia's role was critical, Guterres said. "The idea is to focus on conditions inside Somalia while at the same time mobilizing the support of the international community."

    He expressed his concern for an estimated 1,700 separated and unaccompanied Eritrean children living in the Mai-Aini refugee camp and for refugees who undertake dangerous onward journeys from Ethiopia with human traffickers.

    In a meeting with ARRA Director Isayas Wolde Giorgis, the High Commissioner reiterated UNHCR's commitment to refugee protection and response. "Ethiopia is living proof of the message that refugee protection is the right thing to do," he said, while adding: "The problem is that the number of refugees coming to Ethiopia is growing and the resources are limited."

    Guterres pointed to the Syria conflict, which is draining funds for humanitarian assistance elsewhere. "It is vital, and also strategic, to maintain the support for all humanitarian actions in the Horn of Africa," he stressed.

    By Melissa Fleming in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Mali, Mauritania
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    1. RÉSUMÉ

    En 2013, la Mauritanie continue de subir les effets d’une crise multi-dimensionnelle à la fois alimentaire, nutritionnelle et liée aux réfugiés.

    Les causes qui ont prévalu dans la description de ce contexte en début d’année 2013 restent d’actualité. Toutefois, certains facteurs tant internes (période de soudure, fluctuation des prix des produits alimentaires de base, baisse des revenus des ménages) qu’externes (afflux de réfugiés maliens) maintiennent un niveau de vulnérabilité élevé parmi les populations affectées.

    En effet, malgré une pluviométrie satisfaisante et une bonne récolte en 2012, près de 800 000 personnes seraient toujours en situation d’insécurité alimentaire en juillet 2013. En dépit d’une amélioration relative de la prévalence de l’insécurité alimentaire en zone rurale, de nouvelles poches de vulnérabilité apparaissent en milieu urbain et au nord du pays alors que ces espaces n’avaient pas encore été touchés par l’aide humanitaire d’urgence.

    Parallèlement aux interventions multi-sectorielles de la communauté humanitaire, le Gouvernement a initié le plan de réponse d’urgence Emel visant les populations les plus vulnérables.

    Par ailleurs, l’afflux de réfugiés maliens vers la Mauritanie s’est accentué depuis l’intervention militaire au Nord-Mali en janvier 2013. Cette présence de réfugiés, qui sont estimés à près de 75 500 personnes dans le camp de Mbéra, au sud-est du pays, entraîne une pression supplémentaire à la fois sur les communautés d’accueil, fortement vulnérables et démunies, sur les ressources hydriques et sur l’environnement.

    Au total, la communauté humanitaire en Mauritanie cible 426 000 personnes affectées pour les six prochains mois. Une baisse significative s’observe dans le budget requis du Processus d’Appel Consolidé (CAP) révisé. Ceci s’explique par la projection à 800 000 du nombre de personnes qui pourraient être affectées par l’insécurité alimentaire lors de la période de soudure par rapport aux six premiers mois (comparé à 1 000 000 lors de l’élaboration du CAP 2013 initial). Parmi ces 800 000 personnes, le Gouvernement espère toucher 240 000 personnes à travers les volets de vente de biens à des prix subventionnés dans les boutiques de solidarité et dans les stocks alimentaires villageois de sécurité (SAVS) prévus par le Plan Emel. Le CAP devra prendre en charge 350 000 personnes les plus vulnérables affectées par l’insécurité alimentaire. Le reste des personnes qui pourraient être affectées par l’insécurité alimentaire sera pris en charge par les programmes réguliers des agences, ainsi que par d’autres intervenants comme le Mouvement de la Croix Rouge et du Croissant Rouge Mauritanien et d’autres intervenants hors appel.

    Pour répondre efficacement aux besoins de ces populations affectées, le montant du CAP révisé à miparcours s’élève à US$107 millions, dont $50 millions ont déjà été financés . Malgré la générosité des bailleurs et leur promptitude à répondre à l’appel de la Mauritanie, de nombreux besoins des populations vulnérables restent à couvrir afin d’accompagner le pays dans sa stratégie de résilience.


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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe
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    Favorable food security conditions expected to prevail across the region

    KEY MESSAGES

    • Increased food supplies from ongoing harvests continue to improve food access among poor households. Most rural farming households are accessing food from own produced stocks and supplementing this with food from purchases and through in-kind labor exchanges. Minimal (IPC Phase 1) food acute food insecurity outcomes are projected through September, with the exception of a few localized areas.

    • Tradable national and regional cereal supplies are projected to be tighter in the 2013/14 marketing season due to localized production challenges and generally lower carry-over stocks. Improved household food stocks and adequate supplies on local markets are contributing to declining price trends.

    • However, given that staple food prices have remained higher than their respective 2012 and five-year average levels, food access for poorer households is likely to be constrained earlier than the normal October start of the lean season, especially in localized areas that experienced production shortfalls.

    • The results of ongoing vulnerability and food security assessments are expected in mid-July and will identify the populations at risk of food insecurity during the 2013/14 consumption period and the level and type of assistance that will be required.


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    Source: World Bank
    Country: Nigeria

    KANO, July 12, 2013 - Over three thousand farmers have benefited from Commercial Agriculture Development Project (CADP) in Kano State. Of this number, 1,637 are males while 1,502 women benefited.

    The beneficiaries received over N209 Million from the World Bank-assisted project.

    The World Bank Senior Operations Specialist and Task Team Leader of the project, Lucas Akapa, said at the at the opening ceremony of the 8th World Bank Project Implementation Mission to Kano state recently that CADP has recorded notable achievements, especially with regard to productivity, value-addition and marketed surplus. “These achievements are directly attributable to increased adoption of improved technologies, increased access to improved infrastructure and enhanced capacity of the beneficiaries to effectively participate in project implementation,” said Akapa.

    Dr. Akapa also disclosed that, the project in Kano has promoted Draught Tolerant Maize (DTM) in the traditionally non-maize growing areas using and adoption of System of Rice Intensification (SRI) amongst rice farmers resulting to average yield increase from 2.7 Metric Ton to 3.6 Metric Ton per hectare.

    In the area of rice processing, CADP according to the Task Team Leader, has encouraged the adoption of flash-drying technology by rice processors reducing drying time from 12hrs to 3hrs per ton which increased the production efficiency of beneficiaries and the satisfaction of clients.

    The project has also assisted beneficiaries to upgrade their cow breeds through the use of Artificial Insemination technology and improved feed supplement which resulted in the increase in the volume of milk from 2.15 liters to 4 liters per cow per day. That means increased income for the farmers.

    Making his remarks, The National Project Coordinator of CADP, Dr. Amin Babandi thanked Kano State Government for its support towards smooth implementation of the project in the state.

    Dr. Babandi also informed the gathering that, the main purpose of the mission is to gather inputs from the participating states for the restructuring of the project to align with their agricultural policies for enhanced performance and the required impact.

    Earlier in her address, the Kano State Commissioner of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Hajiya Baraka Sani reiterated the importance of the current restructuring of the project. “If properly restructured, the project will get more support from stakeholders, especially the state governments which will in turn translate to more support for farmers,” said Hajiya Sani.

    The commissioner also implored the project to take advantage of Kano State irrigation facilities to boost commercial production of dry season rice and maize. “Kano state is the home of irrigation farming in Nigeria; the state has seventeen functional dams. It is therefore, my hope and prayer that, CADP will take advantage of these potentials to boost commercial production of dry season rice and maize,” said Sani.

    Five farm access roads have been constructed at a total cost of over N465million to open up inaccessible agrarian communities.

    The project is expected to impact on 10,000 small and medium commercial farmers while many households will benefit indirectly through access to farm access roads, energy and market through spillover effects in the state. The Commercial Agriculture Development Project is piloted in Kano, Cross River, Enugu, Kaduna and Lagos States of Nigeria.

    The US$150 million World Bank assisted project which commenced on July 30, 2009 is expected to close on December 31, 2014.

    Media Contacts
    In Abuja
    Obadiah Tohomdet
    tel : (234) 703 583 0641
    otohomdet@worldbank.org


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    Source: Reuters - AlertNet
    Country: Mali
    • Donors push Mali to hold post-war vote on July 28

    • New government must tackle graft, rebuild shattered state

    • Botched vote could hinder reconciliation

    By David Lewis and Adama Diarra

    DAKAR/GAO, Mali, July 12 (Reuters) - Mali's presidential hopefuls kicked off campaigning this week for a July 28 election intended to draw a line under a coup and an Islamist uprising, despite concerns that a rushed poll may sow the seeds of future strife.

    Read the full article on AlertNet.


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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Chad
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    The growing season is well-established in most of the Sudanian zone

    KEY MESSAGES

    • Grain availability, access, and food consumption for poor households was bolstered the National Food Security Agency’s (ONASA) seasonally normal sales of subsidized grains in June. All regions of the country are currently experiencing Minimal/None (IPC Phase 1) acute food insecurity.

    • The rainy season in the Sudanian zone started one month earlier than usual this year. Due to regular rainfall levels in most areas, widespread planting activities have been observed throughout the region. As usual, crops will be planted in the Sahelian zone beginning in mid-July.

    • The depletion of household grain stocks one month earlier than normal and an atypically steep increase in food prices between July and September will limit grain access of poor households in certain parts of the Sudanian zone. These households will have difficulty meeting their food needs and will face Stressed (IPC Phase 2) food insecurity starting in July.


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    Source: Consortium of International Agricultural Research Centers, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture
    Country: Nigeria

    Researchers and partners met at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan last week to draw a strategy for yam for Nigeria. The strategy aims to put yam on the national agenda as the oil-rich nation embarks on efforts to transform its agricultural sector.

    IITA convened the meeting and participants were drawn from other national research institutes such as the Federal Institute of Industrial Research, Oshodi (FIIRO), Lagos; the agricultural development programs (ADPs), the private sector and other key stakeholders/actors in the yam value chain.

    Addressing participants at the workshop, Dr Robert Asiedu, IITA Director for West Africa reechoed the importance of yam not only in Nigeria, but also globally.

    He said the need to draw a strategy for yam is driven by the desire to harness the exceptional qualities of the crop which are yet to be fully exploited for economic growth and food security. "The strategy will guide us in ensuring synergies and focus on real priorities as we work with partners to unlock the potential of yams" he said.

    With about 68 percent of global output coming from Nigeria, yam plays a key role in the country and the West Africa region as a whole, contributing to protein and dietary calorie intake. The crop is also used for cultural events including marriages and annual festivals.

    However, yam production is declining in some traditional producing areas due to declining soil fertility, increasing pest pressures and the high cost of labor, Dr Asiedu said, a reason why a roadmap for the crop is imperative.

    So far, Ghana has developed its strategy, paving the way for increased export and other industrial uses for the crop.

    Dr Antonio Lopez, IITA Yam Breeder, said having a strategy for yam that would dovetail into the national agricultural policy of the government would bring several benefits to the country, including increase in economic development.

    Participants commended IITA for convening the participatory meeting and bringing yam to the front burner. According to them, the strategy would enhance more coordinated efforts towards addressing the constraints to increased yam production in the country, and would give farmers the opportunity to improve their incomes and better their livelihoods.

    The participatory meeting in Ibadan was co-facilitated by Ms Sylvia Oyinlola, IITA Regional Administrator for West Africa.

    The yam strategy meeting in IITA Ibadan is coming ahead of the 6th Africa Agriculture Science Week, which begins on 15 July 2013 and is being organized by the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA), in Ghana.

    For more information, please contact: Godwin Atser, g.atser@cgiar.org


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    Source: Consortium of International Agricultural Research Centers, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture
    Country: Nigeria

    Researchers have begun the dissemination of pro-vitamin A cassava varieties to rural households as part of efforts to tackle vitamin A deficiency in Nigeria.

    Popularly known as yellow cassava, these new improved varieties hold part of the solution to Vitamin A deficiency in Africa. It is no longer news that vitamin A deficiency is widespread in Nigeria, afflicting about 20% of pregnant women and 30% of children below the age of 5. A deficiency in vitamin A leads to poor health, blindness, stunting, and even death.

    Through decades of conventional breeding efforts, researchers at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in partnership with the National Root Crops Research Institute (NRCRI), Umudike, with funds from HarvestPlus, have been able to develop provitamin A cassava varieties to tackle this malnutrition menace.

    The plan is to ensure that over two million farmers have access to vitamin A cassava stems for planting across the major cassava producing states in Nigeria with initial emphasis on Akwa Ibom, Benue, Imo and Oyo States as regional hubs. HarvestPlus and partners plan to distribute 300,000 bundles of stems to 100,000 households in Nigeria in 2013 alone. Currently, more than 40,000 traceable farmers in Akwa Ibom, Abia, Anambra, Benue, Edo, Oyo, Ogun, Ondo, Ekiti and River states received stems in June and July, while more states will receive stems before the end of August. This is possible because over 500 hectares of the vitamin A varieties were proactively multiplied in 2012. Stakeholders believe that rural households deserve better nutrition and the consumption of more nutritious crops is a good opportunity to reduce malnutrition globally.

    Two Champions in Anambra State, His Royal Highness Igwe Obi Odimegwu, the Igwe Akwu-udughudu of Ubahuekwem Autonomous Community and His Royal Highness Igwe Gabriel Umeh, the Ezeudemba of Akwaezikenyi Kingdom, both in Ihiala LGA, were united in their efforts to introduce vitamin A cassava to their people to contribute to food and health security. In a very colorful ceremony held at Ihudim primary school Ihiala where over 500 farmers received planting materials of the new varieties, the two Kings praised the Federal government, IITA, NRCRI and HarvestPlus for making vitamin A cassava available to farmers in their communities. They pledged to partner with HarvestPlus in ensuring that all farmers in the local government produce, consume, and market vitamin A cassava products.

    Paul Ilona, Country Manager for HarvestPlus advised farmers to cultivate the varieties and consume them sufficiently especially for the under 5 children and pregnant women for better health and nutrition. He also encouraged farmers to give stems to their neighbors at the time of harvest to ensure rapid dissemination of planting materials.

    Besides improving the health and nutrition of the people, the cultivation of the varieties can provide jobs, improve incomes and lift poor households out of poverty.

    Consumers love the varieties because of their nutritional qualities and they can be processed into several dishes.

    During the dissemination exercises across the states in Nigeria, the Nutrition Unit of HarvestPlus displayed a variety of novel products that mothers could produce using the provitamin A cassava to enrich their family nutrition. Products displayed included cassava moi-moi, chin- chin, gari,and fufu. The success being recorded in the dissemination of these new varieties will be presented at the Africa Agriculture Science Week in Accra Ghana. The Science Week is organized by the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa.

    For more information, please contact: Godwin Atser, g.atser@cgiar.org


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    Source: International Medical Corps
    Country: Chad, Sudan

    Experts in the landlocked central African country of Chad expect a better harvest in 2013, following the devastating droughts that affected the Sahel region in 2012. But malnutrition is not a problem that can be resolved in a single year. Hunger is an entrenched public health problem which is why International Medical Corps’ support is so important to communities in eastern Chad.

    International Medical Corps has been working in the Djourf-Alhamar department of Chad, supporting refugees from the conflict in neighboring Sudan and host populations. The challenge each year is to make sure the limited resources can be shared by everyone, including the most vulnerable.

    In March 2013, International Medical Corps completed a district-wide nutrition screening of all children under 5 and pregnant and breastfeeding women. Our community-based approach to managing malnutrition makes sure that every individual at risk of going hungry will now have access to food or be referred to nutrition services in local health centers.


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    Source: Oxfam
    Country: Burkina Faso
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    Burkina Faso relies on subsistence agriculture to meet the basic needs of a large part of its population. Environmental challenges such as land degradation and desertification particularly affect the northern semi-arid provinces, where the most vulnerable groups struggle with food security. Increasing food prices since 2007 mean that improvements in food access and availability are even more important. Local food reserves can make a significant contribution to community-based food security strategies.

    This case study describes the experience of a community-based organisation (Association Aidons l’Afrique Ensemble) in the establishment and management of local food security reserves in the department of Rambo, Burkina Faso.


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Somalia
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    FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

    • Early cessation of rains affect 2013 “gu” crops to be harvested in August in central/southern areas

    • Early start of the dry “hagaa” season (July to September) has negatively impacted on pasture and water availability in the north-east

    • Prices of coarse grains increase seasonally as the lean season peaks

    • Just over one million people are in need of humanitarian assistance (about two thirds are IDPs in settlements)

    • Food security expected to improve from end July with green consumption of 2013 “gu” crops


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    Source: Government of the Netherlands
    Country: Malawi, Netherlands, United Republic of Tanzania

    The Clinton Foundation announced a partnership with the Government of the Netherlands to implement Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA) in Malawi and Tanzania. The Government of the Netherlands will invest $3 million to expand the Clinton Development Initiative’s (CDI) smallholder farming program, adopted by President Banda in September 2012 as a cornerstone of Malawi’s national agriculture strategy, supported by international partners such as the World Bank, to amplify CDI’s positive impact on the environment. In support of the Climate Smart Agriculture Alliance, to be launched in South Africa later this year, the Clinton Foundation and Dutch government are partnering to scale-up Climate Smart Agricultural practices and increase the household incomes of smallholder farmers.

    Since launching an agriculture program in Malawi in 2008, CDI has assisted tens of thousands of smallholder farmers to increase crop yields and lift their incomes, in part by lowering the prices of inputs and improving their access to markets. As a result, smallholder profitability among program participants in Malawi was 567% higher in 2011, on average, than in the year before the project began. With the Dutch grant, CDI will scale up this program in Malawi and replicate it in Tanzania, with a focus on CSA practices.

    “Farming in a sustainable way, in a Climate-Smart way, is vital for our future,” said President Bill Clinton. “Our global economic growth over the long term depends on it, as does each individual agricultural community’s social and environmental welfare. I am grateful to the Government of the Netherlands for supporting my Foundation as it encourages Climate-Smart practices among smallholders in Africa.”

    Amidst burgeoning global populations, rising demand for food and agricultural inputs, and changing climates, CSA takes into account the limits of natural resources and the effects of climate change. Many of the most effective CSA practices support natural re-nourishment of depleted soils, water retention within that soil, protection of surrounding watersheds and forests, and reduction of harmful emissions from agriculture. Africa stands to benefit most from climate-smart agriculture because of the high vulnerability of rural populations to climate change and dependence on agriculture for a majority of livelihoods. To feed the continent's 900 million people, Africa needs its own food security.

    “Ensuring food security under a changing climate is one of the major challenges of our era. Agriculture is the solution to this challenge,” said Minister Dijksma. “As a country of farmers with great agricultural knowledge, it’s our responsibility to share that knowledge internationally through our companies and science institutes, and to grow the production of African smallholder farmers and help them develop new smart methods. Those farmers are the key to deliver the triple wins for food security, adaptation and mitigation.”“The world needs to act urgently to ensure food and nutrition security in the face of climate change. At the same time the way we farm and use land can have an important impact on the emissions which imperil yields and livelihoods” said Rachel Kyte, World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development. “We can already see extreme weather increasing the vulnerability of the global food system. This is a global issue that demands a collective response.”

    Improved agricultural practices have the potential to increase crop yields, reduce the vulnerability of small farmers to drought and floods brought on by climate change, and sequester CO2. The World Bank supports Climate-Smart agriculture through conservation agriculture and landscape restoration projects; research programs - such as the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research - that focus on development of drought- and flood-resistant food crops; and innovative initiatives such as the use of Climate-Smart farming techniques; better weather forecasting; early warning systems; and risk insurance.

    CDI works with 21,000 smallholders in Malawi, and plans to grow that number to 100,000 by the 2015-16 growing season. CDI now operates five commercial farms in Malawi, each of which serves as a hub for smallholder farmers, providing them with access to higher-quality and lower-priced seed, fertilizer, and other inputs. CDI has assisted smallholder farmers’ efforts to improve their organizations, and as a result many have secured small commercial bank loans to fund inputs and farm tool purchases. In Tanzania, at the invitation of the national government, CDI plans to begin operations in 2013-2014 with one commercial farm and 20,000 smallholders. CSA practices will be promoted in all locations, both among smallholders and at CDI’s commercial farms


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    Source: Caritas
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger

    Combien y a-t-il de réfugiés maliens au Burkina Faso ?

    Près de 45 000 personnes fuyant les combats au Mali se sont installées dans notre pays. Les premiers sont arrivés en février dernier. Ils sont allés à Ouagadougou, la capitale, ou sont restés dans le nord du Burkina Faso, près de la frontière avec le Mali. En 2009 et 2010, nous avions accueilli une première vague de réfugiés, nous avions donc déjà une maîtrise de l’organisation à mettre en place pour les recevoir.

    Les réfugiés envisagent-ils de rentrer chez eux après l’élection présidentielle malienne qui doit avoir lieu les 28 juillet et 11 août ?

    Ils espèrent que la situation va se stabiliser après l’élection mais beaucoup d’incertitudes restent. Dans le cadre d’un journal commun avec d’autres Caritas des pays du Sahel (Mali, Niger et Sénégal) (exemplaire en accès PDF ci-dessous), nous avons rencontré de nombreux réfugiés en tête-à-tête pour mieux les connaître : la majorité veut rentrer mais la peur est encore très présente.

    Certains sont animés par la vengeance, ils s’estiment victimes d’une agression, c’est pourquoi nous travaillons à une réconciliation à l’intérieur même des camps. Cela va demander du temps.

    Comment sont installés ces réfugiés ?

    Ils sont dans des camps mis en place par les structures gouvernementales et appuyés par les ONG, dont la Caritas locale appelée l’Ocades. Le premier est à Dori, dans le nord du pays et le second est à cinq kilomètres de la capitale burkinabé. Les personnes y habitent des tentes, bénéficient de soins et d’accompagnements psychologiques.

    À travers le Programme alimentaire mondial, ils reçoivent de la nourriture. Les réfugiés participent aussi à la gestion du camp, ils élisent des interlocuteurs pour les structures gouvernementales et les ONG et participent à la sécurisation du camp.

    Quelles actions menez-vous avec l’Ocades auprès d’eux ?

    Nous intervenons principalement sur l’éducation à l’environnement. Nous dotons les réfugiés en énergie domestique en distribuant du bois et nous leur apprenons à faire des foyers améliorés (qui gardent mieux la chaleur et nécessitent moins de bois). Avec l’afflux massif de population, l’équilibre environnemental peut être perturbé : il est indispensable de prendre en compte ce facteur pour éviter d’aggraver la situation de la région.

    Notre volonté est surtout que les habitants des camps accèdent à un peu d’autonomie. Nous avons mis en place la possibilité de faire du « cash-transfert », c’est-à-dire qu’une personne puisse faire des petits boulots dans le camp et soit rémunérée en échange.

    Y a-t-il beaucoup de conflits entre réfugiés et populations locales ?

    Comme partout, il faut travailler à la cohésion sociale. Pour cela, nous organisons des théâtre forum dans les camps, c’est-à-dire une pièce de théâtre durant laquelle on demande aux spectateurs d’identifier les problèmes et de trouver une ou des solutions. Cela pousse à l’implication des uns et des autres.

    Nous proposons aussi des sensibilisations et des « causeries ». Ces dernières sont mises en place régulièrement et amènent une cinquantaine de participants à débattre de thèmes comme la paix, en présence d’un animateur de l’Ocades et d’un interprète réfugié. Il y a un dialogue à nouer entre Maliens et Burkinabés, mais il y a aussi un dialogue à nourrir entre différentes communautés au sein même des réfugiés.

    Propos recueillis par Sophie Lebrun

    Quatre Caritas auprès des déplacés et réfugiés

    Environ 203 840 personnes ont été déplacées par le conflit au Mali selon le Haut commissariat des Nations unies pour les réfugiés. Tous fuient l’insécurité, palpable dans certaines régions du Mali. Pendant ce temps, au nord du pays, beaucoup sont sous la menace de vives tensions alimentaires.

    En appui au travail des quatre Caritas dans cette zone où le conflit s’étend sur le plan humanitaire, le Secours Catholique–Caritas France s’engage jusqu’en décembre 2013 auprès de 78 404 personnes : réfugiés, déplacés, autochtones, éleveurs, et bénéficiaires de mesures favorisant la santé, l’éducation, le retour dans sa localité, la cohésion sociale…

    Cinq résultats sont attendus : Un filet de sécurité alimentaire pour les déplacés, réfugiés et habitants vivant à côté des camps de réfugiés. Des vivres sont actuellement fournis à 2 800 ménages déplacés et à 2 044 ménages réfugiés au Mali et au Niger. Au Burkina Faso, une aide financière va être donnée à 1 000 familles réfugiées et à des autochtones eux aussi victimes de la crise pour la constitution d’un cheptel familial et la vaccination de 20 000 bovins. Toujours au Burkina Faso, 500 fours économiques en énergie seront distribués à ces mêmes populations.

    Des médicaments seront fournis à des centres de santé - 2 000 personnes y sont soignées - et 200 « kits d’habitat » (tentes, couvertures…) ont été distribuées à des familles maliennes déplacées. Trois mille kits scolaires (fournitures…) leur seront donnés.

    La cohésion sociale entre autochtones, déplacés, et réfugiés continue à être soutenue (Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger). La sensibilisation à cette question touche environ 1 500 personnes grâce au travail de 58 éducateurs et agents de Caritas.

    Des déplacés du Mali pourront retourner chez eux. Le voyage de mille d’entre eux est financé, 774 autres familles de retour au village, ayant reçu des semences céréalières et maraîchères, peuvent espérer des jours meilleurs.

    En juin, le Secours Catholique–Caritas France a attribué 252 000 euros aux quatre Caritas pour cette opération sur un projet qui s’élève, au total, à 3 055 134 euros. La partie du budget à proprement parler humanitaire atteint, elle, 2 277 598 euros.


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    Source: Assessment Capacities Project
    Country: Afghanistan, Angola, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guinea, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Malawi, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Myanmar, Namibia, Niger, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Somalia, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, World, Yemen, South Sudan (Republic of)
    preview


    In Syria, the regime’s offensive on Homs governorate and city is on-going with artillery and air strikes, displacing 400,000 and leaving an estimated 2,500 and 4,000 civilians trapped in and around the city. Some 2 million people in Government-controlled areas in Aleppo are affected by a siege of opposition forces that is blocking food and medicines from entering several areas. While the UN and the Red Cross have called for a truce during the month of Ramadan, the cease-fire was rejected by the Government.

    A 6.2 magnitude earthquake struck southwest of Bener Meriah District, Aceh province in western Indonesia. According to the authorities, over 52,100 people, 28% of the population of the affected districts, were displaced by the earthquake that hit Aceh on 2 July.

    While India is still struggling to recover from the deadly floods in Uttarakhand state in mid-June, renewed heavy rainfall hit various parts of the country, including Uttarakhand, Assam, Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh states, in late June and July. As of 9 July, according to various sources, over 4,000 people remained missing, with the death toll being already estimated up to 1,000 in Uttarakhand state where the floods have affected approximately 500,000 people.

    Fresh fighting in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has led to the displacement of more than 66,000 people into Uganda after Ugandan rebels from the DRC-based ADF (Allied Democratic Forces)-Nalu took control of the town of Kamango in Nord-Kivu. In addition, the UN reported this week that more than 1.2 million people are affected by food insecurity in the Ugandan northeastern region of Karamoja.

    Last Updated: 15/07/2013 Next Update: 22/07/2013

    Global Emergency Overview web interface


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    Source: Consortium of International Agricultural Research Centers
    Country: Benin, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe

    Efforts to transform agriculture in Africa have received a boost as researchers met under the Support for Agricultural Research and Development of Strategic Crops (SARD-SC)’s event, “Partners, Possibilities and Prospects,” on 15 July 2013 at the 6th African Agricultural Science Week in Accra to draw more support from partners into project.

    The SARD-SC project will raise the productivity of maize, cassava, wheat, and rice by 20% in twenty selected countries in Africa.

    The plan is to reduce food importation from other continents and offer farmers better access to markets, improve livelihoods, and tackle poverty through enhanced capacities of beneficiaries to sustainable development in the region.

    About a million farmers will directly benefit from the project through its innovations basket, while another million and half will be reached by project spin off effects. “Narrowing the yield gap is key for African farmers, and it will help them to compete globally and to feed themselves,” says Project Coordinator of SARD-SC, Dr Chrysantus Akem, from the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA).

    Funded by the African Development Bank with US$ 63.24 million, SARD-SC also aims to create knowledge on the tested innovations with farmers in Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, DR Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

    Drs Thomas Dubois, SARD SC Rice Commodity Specialist; and Solomon Assefa, SARD SC Wheat Commodity Specialist made presentations on rice and wheat strategies of the project.

    The 5-year, multi-CGIAR center initiative will run until 2016, and will be co-implemented by three Africa-based CGIAR centers: IITA, Africa Rice Center, and the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas. IITA is also the Executing Agency of the project. Another CGIAR center – the International Food Policy Research Institute – a specialized technical agency, will support the other three centers.

    For more information, please contact: Godwin Atser, g.atser@cgiar.org; Chrysantus Akem, c.akem@iita.org or Andrea Gros, a.gros@cgiar.org


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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Mali

    07/15/2013 19:34 GMT

    BAMAKO, July 15, 2013 (AFP) - One of the favourites to win Mali's presidential elections took his campaign to the northern Tuareg rebel bastion of Kidal on Monday, several sources told AFP, with two weeks to go until voting begins.

    "Presidential candidate Ibrahim Boubacar Keita arrived Monday in Kidal for the election campaign," said an African source from the United Nations peacekeeping mission, while Keita's campaign chief confirmed he had spent "a few hours" in the town.

    Keita, a former prime minister, is among the front-runners in the July 28 election, seen as crucial to reuniting Mali after an 18-month political crisis that saw French forces intervene to push out Islamist rebels who had seized the country's north.

    Soumaila Cisse, a former president of the Commission of the West African Economic and Monetary Union, is also expected in Kidal "very soon", according to his campaign team.

    Mali's Foreign Minister Tieman Coulibaly vowed on Saturday that the country would push ahead with a "credible and transparent" vote despite widespread scepticism about the country's ability to stage the election.

    Much of the concern is focused on Kidal, which remains tense despite a peace deal with Tuareg separatists that allowed the Malian army to enter the town.

    Supporters and opponents of the Malian army have staged frequent demonstrations in recent days, with at least two UN peacekeepers and a French soldier injured by stones thrown during one protest.

    Most local government has been absent for more than a year since the Tuareg National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) and allied armed factions linked to Al-Qaeda seized key towns in Mali's vast arid north.

    The town's governor returned to the area on Monday, however, after initially attempting to retake his post last week but being forced to retreat back to Bamako amid tension in Kidal.

    Malian military officers staged a coup in March last year after being overpowered by an MNLA rebellion that seized key northern cities before being sidelined by its Islamist allies who imposed a harsh form of sharia law in towns under their control.

    A French-led intervention launched in January drove out the Islamists but the MNLA took control of Kidal, 1,500 kilometres (930 miles) from the capital, which they consider the heart of the desert territory they call Azawad.

    sd/stb/cs/ft/fb

    © 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse


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