Worsening violence in the north of Mali in 2012 provoked displacement towards Southern Mali and Niger. Additionally, since April 2013 the North East of Nigeria has faced an escalation of violence between Nigerian government forces and Boko Haram (BH) insurgents which has caused significant displacements of people in Nigeria and in neighboring countries, particularly Niger. In February 2015, conflict reached the territory of Niger with attacks of BH elements in the communes of Bosso and Diffa resulting in substantial population movements in the Diffa region. Niger has taken in approximately 50,000 Malian refuges and Nigerien returnees who are being sheltered in 3 camps in the region of Tillabery. These camps are situated within a very vulnerable zone where malnutrition and food insecurity are recurrent issues. 

In this context, 40 to 50 different organizations are acting to provide humanitarian aid and development perspectives on the ground. Since its deployment in 2012, REACH has come in support of general coordination efforts to provide more specific information on humanitarian activities and on existing infrastructures for targeted areas of concern.

  • REACH was first deployed to Niger in early 2012 to support UNHCR and ACTED teams in mapping major refugee camps. Since then, REACH teams have regularly completed mapping of services and infrastructures within Malian and Nigerian refugee camps and infrastructure mapping within sites hosting displaced persons in the Diffa region (see one example from Mountchaki as of July 2015). REACH’s maps were broadly circulated to humanitarian actors, enabling a better understanding of the spatial and social dynamics of the camps and supporting camp management and service-delivery to refugees.
  • REACH has also established a 6W matrix (Who, for  Whom, Where, What, how many), introduced by way of an interactive dashboard to compile monthly information on humanitarian interventions in the region of Diffa. An interactive website entirely dedicated to the humanitarian response in Diffa was also created in April 2015, in collaboration with UNHCR Niger.
  • REACH will soon provide the humanitarian community in Niger with information regarding programming gaps and needs of affected populations within the region of Diffa. Going forward, REACH will also fill information gaps within the region on population movements and displacement trends.