Since 2012, Niger has been heavily impacted by conflict and large population displacements on its borders with Mali, Nigeria and Chad. This instability has exacerbated an already very fragile humanitarian situation, as the country is prone to food crises and resulting food insecurity and malnutrition.

REACH was first deployed to Niger in early 2012, when worsening violence in the north of Mali led around 50,000 Malian refugees and Nigerien returnees to flee to Tillabéri region. REACH, in close cooperation with UNHCR, launched mapping programs in the three camps hosting displaced populations. Subsequently, REACH launched programs in the Diffa region, heavily affected by the escalation of the Boko Haram crisis which caused the displacement of over 300,000 refugees from Nigeria and Chad as well as internal displacement of Nigeriens. REACH Niger currently has six international and six national staff. It is based in Niamey, with a sub-base in Diffa.

Today, multiple humanitarian crises continue to collide in Niger, with displaced populations’ living mainly in out-of-camp settings among equally vulnerable host communities. The availability of information on the profile, needs and vulnerabilities of these population groups remains a key challenge. REACH Niger hence works to provide reliable information on the situation and needs of all those affected by the displacement crisis, informing aid actors and governmental counterparts decision making.

REACH programmes in Niger focus on three main pillars:

  • Mapping of socio-economic infrastructures: Most displaced persons in Diffa region do not live in camps, but rather in over a 100 different displacement sites. REACH carries out periodic mappings of these sites, giving an overview of the basic services that are present and of the conditions in which the population lives. These maps allow humanitarian actors to better understand the situation on the ground and plan their response.
  • Needs assessments of priority sectors: To further deepen the understanding of where assistance is needed, REACH collects systematic data about populations’ needs in a number of key areas: water and sanitation, protection, shelter and education. This information is at the core of Humanitarian Needs Overviews and Cluster plans, year after year.
  • Reinforcement of information management: Since 2017, REACH Niger runs a centre to support information management (‘Centre d’Appui à la Gestion de l’Information’ – CAGI). Through the organisation of trainings and technical support, CAGI reinforces the humanitarian community’s capacity to access, collect and analyse information on the humanitarian situation, improving the overall capacity of aid partners and ensuring stronger evidence for decision making.

REACH works closely with humanitarian and development partners in Niger, including: UNHCR, UNICEF, OCHA, WASH Cluster, Protection Cluster, Shelter/NFI Cluster, Education Cluster and the IM Working Group. This work is supported by ECHO, OFDA and BPRM.