With over 235,000 displaced persons, the Diffa region is considered as one of the main humanitarian hot spots of the Lake Chad crisis. Since 2015, this area located in south-east Niger has been affected by protracted conflict and massive displacement. However, little was known on the extent of humanitarian needs of the population living in this region, hindering response planning and delivery by humanitarian actors.
Building on years of partnership, REACH implemented numerous activities during 2017 in Diffa through the support of UNHCR. The main objective of this partnership and program is to gather information on activities implemented by humanitarian actors in the Diffa region, as well as on local populations’ needs (hosts, internally displaced persons and refugees). REACH data and analysis has allowed to identify gaps in humanitarian interventions, and enabled better coordination and planning among humanitarian stakeholders.
Informing humanitarian planning and response in the Diffa region:
As part of this project, REACH provided Information Management (IM) support to aid actors, namely clusters, UN Agencies and NGOs. REACH has been collaborating with aid actors to develop a ‘6W’ matrix (Who, for Whom, When, What, hoW many, Where), today managed by OCHA, which offers a monthly summary of all humanitarian activities carried out in the Diffa region. REACH teams also provided substantial IM support to Shelter/non-food items (NFI) working group, enabling better analysis of data during the 2018 planning process.
REACH teams also conducted regular assessments, such as protection and shelter/NFI assessments, as well as extensive mapping of community infrastructure to better understand the needs of the local populations and provide solid evidence for response planning.
A participatory and regional methodology:
To collect extensive and regular information at field level, REACH has developed a large outreach capacity in Diffa and collected as part of this project primary data in more than 150 displacement sites and host villages. REACH is one of the key IM and assessment actors in Niger, with the unique capacity to cover the entire Diffa region and provide a holistic overview of needs across population groups. REACH teams gathered information through interviews at household level, with key informants and through focus group discussions, organised by age and/or gender in order to investigate specific issues.
Through its activities and information products, REACH provided UNHCR, shelter/NFI and protection working groups and the broader humanitarian community with reliable information that enhanced planning and decision-making for 2017 and 2018.