ReDSS training on area based approaches to inform durable solutions planning

ReDSS has designed a face-to-face training curriculum on area-based planning to strengthen the capacity of actors involved in durable solutions in the East and Horn of Africa region. The main goal of the training is for practitioners and policy makers to be better equipped to lead and take part in area-based solutions planning for Displacement Affected Communities.  The training was first piloted in Jigjiga, capital of the Somali Regional State in Ethiopia in March 2020 and will be further rolled out in Ethiopia, at the Woreda, regional, and federal levels, as well as in other countries in the region where ReDSS is active to support area-based solutions planning at local levels.

The main learning objectives are for training workshop participants to be able to:

  • Explain the added value of area-based approaches to plan for durable solutions and enhance social cohesion in displacement contexts.
  • Apply area-based approach elements and principles and link them to the durable solutions planning cycle.
  • Explain how to lead and/or take part in context specific, inclusive and government-led durable area-based solutions processes, meaningfully involving a wide range of actors.

Throughout the curriculum specific emphasis is put on:

  • Social cohesion
  • Community engagement
  • Government engagement

Click here for the training guide and here for the training modules and other useful resources

Towards a common research agenda in Ethiopia- A research synthesis paper to inform the implementation of the GCR

This synthesis paper is designed to inform future policy making and programming in relation to Ethiopian government and international support to refugees. Specifically, it aspires to enable the development of a common narrative among the key refugee stakeholders in Ethiopia about how best to support displacement and durable solutions processes
in the country, informed by evidence drawn from existing literature. It is set out in line with the Government of Ethiopia draft ten-year National Comprehensive Refugee Response Strategy (NCRRS), at a time of transition for the Ethiopian refugee operation. The new legal framework passed by the Ethiopian parliament in February 2019 creates significant opportunities for developing a more sustainable and effective response that meets the needs of refugees and the local populations living in proximity to them.

The synthesis paper is also intended to act as an entry point to the significant body of work upon which it draws, analyses, and references. Key documents are noted throughout the text, particularly those that are relevant to the NCRRS. Links for online access to these documents are also provided. The focus of this paper is on current publicly available work, although upcoming studies of particular value are also referenced. All these studies, and more, are included in the Ethiopian government Knowledge Management Database (available here), which has been developed with ReDSS support.

The paper is organised as follows: the 1st section provides a short overview of the current refugee situation in Ethiopia. Following that, the next section highlights key themes, identifies critical research gaps, and makes recommendations for the development of a common research agenda. The remainder of the synthesis paper is the main body of this study, analysing relevant literature across the four objectives of the NCRRS. Finally, a methodology section explaining the process followed to produce this paper is annexed.

This process was conducted in partnership with the Rift Valley Institute and it was guided by a technical advisory group that included ARRA, UNHCR, UNICEF, the World Bank, the British Government, the European Union, DRC, ACF and SOAS. The study was funded by the European Union.

Click here for the full report and here for the executive summary.

ReDSS Ethiopia key messages ahead of the Global Refugee Forum preparations

In partnership with its members, ReDSS has developed a key messaging document to support preparations to participate in government-led GRF consultation processes. It both serves as a guide in terms of coherent messaging during consultative processes but also to key stakeholders (donors, development and humanitarian actors, civil society etc.) to support a common agenda and encourage the development of supporting (joint) pledges and contributions. Messaging for Somalia and Kenya will be shared soon.

Local integration Focus: Refugees in Ethiopia

ReDSS has conducted a solutions analysis identifying gaps and opportunities to inform local integration planning and programing for refugees who have been in Ethiopia for over 20 years residing in camps and urban areas of Gambela and Somali regions. The analysis is based on the ReDSS Solutions framework and involves a very participatory and consensus building approach including consultations and validation workshops with displacement affected communities and other key stakeholders.

Following the 2016 Leaders’ Summit held in New York,  the Government of Ethiopia made nine pledges to strengthen its support to refugees, shifting from a ‘care and maintenance’ or camp-based model of  refugee assistance to an approach which emphasizes refugee self-reliance, refugee mobility in-country and the integration of refugees into regional and national development processes. In light of these commitments, local integration of refugees has become a possibility; but more efforts are required to assess how it can be made an operational and sustainable reality. To translate this into an operational outcome, a whole of society approach is required: bringing together development and humanitarian actors, government, civil society organizations and private sector with the participation of communities to change the status quo in camp and urban settings.

The findings and recommendations from this analysis are currently being discussed with the government of Ethiopia and key stakeholders. It is hoped that the analysis will contribute to informing the implementation of the “local integration pledge” (pledge 6), the ongoing Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) discussion, and the implementation of IGAD’s comprehensive plan of action for Somali refugees and returnees.
Refer to Ethiopia solutions analysis page for the full report, executive summary and presentation.