ReDSS

An adaptive and participatory approach to inform durable solutions processes

The search for durable solutions to protracted displacement in the East and Horn of Africa is a regional and cross-border issue, with a strong political dimension. It demands a multi-sectoral response that goes beyond the existing humanitarian agenda. A consistent problem in the response to protracted displacement is the lack of a common framework and outcomes indicators relevant to solutions and a joint understanding of the drivers (and the construct) of solutions. This challenge makes it difficult to generate relevant data and analysis to identify displacement-specific protection and assistance needs to inform decision-making in collective responses. One of ReDSS’ first initiatives in 2015 aimed to address this problem. Inspired and informed by the IASC Framework, member agencies developed the ReDSS Durable Solutions Framework and its theory of change. The ReDSS Framework is a practical, easy-to-use rapid analysis tool with a very simple visual. It is used as part of a solutions analysis process, which enables users to answer the following questions:

  • What are the barriers/opportunities for durable solutions?
  • To what extent have durable solutions been achieved?
  • What changes to policy and practice are required to advance progress towards durable solutions?
  • Where to focus and prioritize investments based on gaps and challenges identified?

The ReDSS framework can be used by practitioners and policy-makers to tailor programming and policies according to a common logical framework around solutions and based on a collective analysis. It represents a unique way of informing joint planning at the granular level in a holistic and comprehensive manner across sectors and actors. It has been used in IDP and refugee contexts, as well as situations of return for both IDPs and refugees and in camp, out-of-camp and urban contexts in Uganda, Somalia, Tanzania and Ethiopia. A strong emphasis has been placed on a collaborative and consensus building approach, engaging humanitarian, development and governmental actors, as well as displacement-affected communities to develop a common analysis. The participatory process in which the tool is used is key to ensuring its relevance and appropriateness, including learning from challenges and managing different opinions and perspectives to reach a joint analysis. Click:

  • here to read more on key learning generated from these efforts
  • here to download ReDSS solutions framework and its theory of change
  • here for the solutions guidance package and tools

 

Longitudinal Solutions analyses Baidoa, Kismayo and Mogadishu

Building on the 2016/17 Somalia Solutions analyses, the Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS) has commissioned Samuel Hall to:

  1. Review the uptake and impacts of the recommendations from the first Solutions analyses to see to what extent those have informed durable solutions planning, programing and policies, and share lessons learnt
  2. Update the Solutions analyses for Bay, Benadir and Lower Juba, in order to assess progress and challenges since February 2017 and this will be conducted on an annual basis over the next 4 years to have better longitudinal analyses in these locations (the update will be based on the ReDSS solutions framework’s environmental analysis and 8 criteria – not on specific indicators

This exercise will be conducted on an annual basis over the next four years to have better longitudinal analyses in these locations. Through the work proposed, solution-oriented planning and programming will be benefit from the availability of disaggregated data on 1) the aspirations of displacement-affected communities regarding their future and 2) the dynamics and relationships between different groups living in the displacement-affected community.Click here for the terms of reference and open call for tenders. For further information or to be involved in the study, kindly contact Rufus Karanja (r.karanja@regionadss.org).

Longitudinal aspirations surveys to inform durable solutions programming and policies in Baidoa, Kismayo, Mogadishu, Dollow

The Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS) has commissioned REACH Initiative to develop and pilot a people-centered survey methodology to understand intentions and aspirations vis-à-vis durable solutions, as well as inter-community dynamics and relations, in displacement-affected communities. This will be used annually as a longitudinal survey in Baidoa, Kismayo, Dollow and Mogadishu. Survey data will help to inform the design and adaptation of solutions-oriented policies and programming.

The survey will aim at providing contextualized and evidence-based disaggregated data and information. It will focus on the following:
Aspirations vis-à-vis durable solutions:

  • Respondents’ preferences in terms of durable solutions process (local integration, return, resettlement) and its location
  • The reasons (push and pull factors) that influence their decisions around movement
  • Factors that would contribute to the realization and sustainability of their preferred solution

Dynamics and relations with displacement affected communities:

  • Perceptions of relations within and between different groups within the displacement affected communities (DAC: IDPs, returnees, host community)
  • Perceptions of relations between community members and local institutions
  • Perceptions on other relations/dynamics with the DAC
  • Respondents’ social networks in the displacement-affected community and elsewhere

Based on the survey findings, workshops will be conducted bringing policy makers and practitioners together to inform collective analysis/ common understanding of the different factors that shape displacement, return and (re)integration in Somalia to adapt and improve durable solutions programing:

  • What are profiles, aspirations, intentions and push and pull factors of host, returnees and IDP populations?
  • What are the underlying issues that influence processes of displacement, return and (re)integration?
  • What factors shape people’s decisions concerning displacement, return and (re)integration in these 4 locations?
  • What is the impact of displacement, return and (re)integration on the wider community?
  • Priorities and recommendations would also be used to inform and contribute to National Development Plan, draft National Policy on Internal Displacement, local development and urbanization/space planning documents and other appropriate policies.

Click here for the terms of reference and for further information or to be involved in the surveys, kindly contact Rufus Karanja (r.karanja@regionadss.org).

ReDSS bi-monthly update June 2018

In this bi-monthly update, you will find information about ongoing and upcoming longitudinal studies in the region, adaptive learning process in Somalia, the start of ReDSS Ethiopia and the increased capacity of ReDSS Somalia to support locally led solutions processes, as well as other useful resources.

Click on the link to download the update and here to see previous updates from ReDSS

Implementation of the CRRF in East Africa: Supporting a ‘whole of society’ approach

CRRF processes in the region are contributing to positive changes with a stronger focus on a self-reliance and resilience, integrated refugee-host community programming, engagement of development actors and a commitment to support stronger participation of refugees and host communities in programing and policy processes. But a number of challenges remain to be addressed, with the most important ones being:

  • a disconnect between policies processes versus operational realities with policies changing faster than implementation
  • a disconnect between capitals and districts/ counties level with the urgent need to strengthen and invest into locally led processes
  • support ‘whole of government” approaches to bring line ministries and displacement within national development plans as opposed to processes being solely led by Refugee Agencies
  • ensure that displacement affected communities are engaged in planning and programing
  • address right to work and freedom of movement as core components of self-reliance and resilience programing as without those, refugees won’t be able to become self-reliant
  • essential to effectively integrate host community relations and social integration as a core part of Durable Solution strategies
  • ensure that protection remains at the core of our work including in development programming

Click here to download the brief

Together towards Somali-led durable solutions processes

With over 2.6 million IDPs in Somalia as a result of conflict, violence, insecurity, and severe natural disasters, addressing displacement challenges is critical to find durable solutions to protracted displacement and give the millions of displaced a chance of a better life with dignity and self-reliance. Somali authorities and national actors have the primary responsibility to address these issues and need to be adequately supported to be able to play a leadership and coordinating role. It is essential to collectively invest into capacities to sustain solutions locally and nationally. Such investments will strengthen national institutions and partnerships that can sustain locally owned solutions.

In 2017, the European Union launched a 3-year programme known as REINTEG to support the return and reintegration of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and refugee-returnees across Somalia and Somaliland. The programme also aims to enhance the capacities of the Somalia government and local authorities to assume their primary responsibility for facilitating durable solutions.

The EU is working with five consortia (four NGO-led and one UN-led) to achieve these results. The NGO-led consortia include: Somaliland Durable Solutions Consortium (SDSC) led by World Vision in Somaliland; Enhancing Integration of Displacement affected communities in Somalia (EIDACS) led by Concern World Wide in South West State; Jubaland Solutions Consortium (JSC) led by Norwegian Refugee Council in Jubaland and the Durable Solutions for IDPs and Returnees in Somalia (DSIRS) led by Care in Galmadug. The Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS) is supporting the EU REINTEG partners on the learning component by bringing them together towards one durable solution vision where each of the RE-INTEG consortia contributes through different approaches. See a summary infographic.

ReDSS members, in coordination with government and local authorities, the office of the UN Resident Coordinator (RCO), the Somalia NGO Consortium, and various UN agencies, have invested in a longer term knowledge management and capacity development approach in Somalia and developed different learning tools such as trainings, online tutorials, one pagers briefs, etc. The aim is to support a common understanding and vision to durable solutions processes in Somalia.

Since 2016, over 120 practitioners and policy makers have been trained in Somalia. In March 2018, EIDACS consortium with the support of ReDSS organized a durable solutions training in Baidoa for local authorities and practitioners in South West State, in partnership with Somalia NGO Consortium and UN agencies.

37 participants from various South West State (SWS) line ministries, Baidoa local authorities including the Mayor of Baidoa, UN agencies and non-governmental organizations attended the training and contributed to very interesting and lively discussions and debates. Bringing different stakeholders together and especially local actors is essential to understand different perspectives and support a common understanding of challenges and opportunities in the search for durable solutions in Somalia. 

Investing into capacities at regional level is essential as local authorities have the primary responsibility to lead and coordinate durable solutions programing.Mr. Watiin Abdullahi, the mayor of Baidoa emphasized the need to support local municipalities to be able to respond to displacement in urban context including forced evictions and access to services for displaced and host communities in an integrated and sustainable way.

Mr. Abdulqadir Mohamed, the Commissioner of the South West State (SWS) Commission on IDPs and Refugees said that such trainings are “critical to strengthen early preparedness and response efforts to reduce the risk of displacement in urban areas as well as enhance protection and absorption capacity”. Unplanned and informal settlements are frequently in peripheral and higher risk prone locations. Urban centres face critical absorption challenges which further increase pressure and social tension among hosting communities and urban displaced over access to overburdened services’’.

Mayor Watiin was able to bring key points from the workshop to a learning event on solutions in urban contexts organized by ReDSS, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the Rift Valley Institute (RVI) in Nairobi in April 2018. The event was attended by over 120 people and Mayor Watiin was on a panel with World Bank Urban experts and UN Habitat. It was a key opportunity for him to share his perspective and priorities on durable solutions in urban context. His presentation is available here and ReDSS Study on urban refugees in Nairobi and IDPs and refugee-returnees in Mogadishu and Baidoa here. The study aimed to better understand and address displaced people’s vulnerabilities and aspirations in urban centers and to rethink support in more sustainable and empowering ways and the Mayor was actively involved in the study process.

During the last session of the training, participants engaged in group and plenary discussions to agree on recommendations to inform joint planning and to ensure use and uptake of the training learning in their respective area or work. Representatives from lines ministries and authorities requested for further support on strengthening community-driven durable solutions approaches, strengthening self-reliance and resilience in urban context and enhancing preparedness and early solutions to prevent further displacement.

“We should not implement anything unless every relevant stakeholder including the displaced themselves are involved in decision-making process. Not only, do we have to consult all groups, women, youth, religious leaders and other affected groups to fully scope the needs in Baidoa; but we also need to explore more innovative ways of working with private sector and various businesses in provision of key services such as water due to strain that the town already faces”, said the Mayor.

Both the mayor and the commissioner appreciated the partnership with ReDSS and the EU REINTEG consortia and stressed the fact that agencies need to do more to strengthen the capacities of local authorities to play a leadership and coordinating role in durable solutions processes.

Long-term multi sectorial and multi actors funding such as EU’s RE-INTEG is instrumental to bring humanitarian and development stakeholders together and support a common vision to improve collective programing and policies.

New approaches are needed for effective humanitarian-development coordination to find durable solutions for IDPs in Somalia using area based planning processes led by municipalities and authorities. Part of these new approaches is for actors to continue to evolve ‘adaptive programming’ moving away from sectorial and linear cause and effect’ approaches and to continuously adapt to Somalia very volatile context.

We have a collective responsibility to challenge our structures and systems to do more and better together in the search for durable solutions for displacement affected communities. It is essential to collectively invest into capacities to sustain solutions locally and nationally. Such investments will strengthen national institutions and partnerships that can sustain locally owned solutions.

This is what RE-INTEG Consortia are supporting by investing in real time learning and adaptive management, mentorship and peer learning to ensure that RE INTEG programing is flexible and responsive to changing contexts and needs.

Click here to read more on core elements to inform solutions programming and what durable solutions in Somalia means.

ReDSS 2017 review and 2020 strategy

ReDSS annual report is a reflection of our impact, key accomplishments, challenges and engagement with our members in 2017. We would like to thank our members, external partners and donors for their continued support, engagement and commitment to do more and better together in the search for durable solutions in the East and Horn of Africa region. Click here for the report and here for a summary presentation and 2018/2020 focus and priorities.

Analysis of solutions programming in urban contexts

ReDSS analysis of solutions programming in urban contexts focuses on urban refugees in Nairobi, Kenya and IDPs and refugee-returnees in Mogadishu and Baidoa in Somalia. The report aimed to better understand and address displaced people’s vulnerabilities and aspirations in urban centers and to rethink support in more sustainable and empowering ways. The methodology was based on participatory and consensus building approach including consultations and validation workshops with displacement affected communities, policy makers and practitioners.

The displacement environment in the Horn of Africa is primarily one of encampment however increasingly internally displaced persons (IDPs), returning refugees and to a lesser extent refugees are moving to towns and cities. Kenya for instance hosts some 65,000 urban refugees (or 13% of its total refugee population). In Somalia, over 2 million children, women and men are internally displaced. Most people displaced by drought left rural parts of Bay, Lower Shabelle, and Sool and settled in urban areas such as Mogadishu and Baidoa. The population of Baidoa has doubled in the past 12 months.

Urban displaced often join marginalized neighborhoods effectively become hidden in their host city, while others remain part of the visible urban poor further exacerbating their vulnerabilities. Such a sudden and rapid influx of large populations compounds difficulties that cities already face in the highly urbanized regions, leading to overcrowding of informal settlements and increasing demand for urban services, land, jobs, and housing.

New approaches are needed for effective humanitarian-development coordination to find solutions to urban displacement, using area based planning processes led by municipalities and authorities. A comprehensive response to urban displacement won’t involve a one-size-fits-all solution, it must be a multi-stakeholder approach that improves the business-enabling environment for everyone—refugees and host communities alike.

Click below to access the full report, executive summary and power point presentation on key findings and recommendations. The report was funded by ECHO and the Danish Embassy for Kenya and Somalia.

Brief on forced evictions as an obstacle to durable solutions in Somalia

Since 2015, an annual average of more than 155,000 individuals have been evicted across Somalia. Mogadishu and Baidoa are so far the worst affected towns, with thousands of people being evicted from both public and private infrastructure. Forced evictions in Somalia disproportionately affect internally displaced persons (IDPs). These evictions are often unlawful and violate the full range of civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights enshrined in various international instruments. IDPs are unable to access and assert their basic rights, mainly due to insecure land tenure arrangements in IDP settlements. This has interrupted the ongoing reintegration processes in Somalia as well as undermined collective efforts to assist IDPs accelerate their path to recovery and attain durable solutions.

This one-pager brief outlines key recommendations that promote an inclusive and rights-based approach to evictions, with a view to support a long-term solution for IDPs at risk. There is an urgent need to strengthen the regulatory environment for forced evictions in Somalia and measures to address social exclusion of marginalized communities in order to mitigate the needs and risks of IDPs.

Click here to download full one pager.