Nigeria: Keeping pace with displacement dynamics by assessing IDP movement intentions in Borno State

August 9, 2017

Bama Camp_IDP movement intentions assessment (5)_cropped

REACH Nigeria team conducting focus group discussions on movement intentions in an IDP informal settlement in Maiduguri, Borno © REACH/July 2017

In north-eastern Nigeria, over 2 million people have been forced into displacement, out of which 1.4 million are in Borno State. While some areas have recently experienced returns in proximity of main roads, the population from many Local Government Areas (LGAs) is likely to remain displaced for the medium term, lacking security, shelter and livelihoods in their villages of origin. With a highly dynamic and difficult to access context, Nigeria remains a crisis with limited amount of evidence available to humanitarian partners for aid planning and delivery. Specifically, in Borno State, there is a lack of information on the intentions of internally displaced persons (IDPs) to return, relocate or settle in their areas of displacement.

Accordingly, REACH is currently carrying out an assessment of IDPs’ movement intentions to return to their area of origin, move to a new location, or settle permanently in their current location. The study also looks into factors that are likely to influence IDPs’ decision to move, such as their current living conditions, separation from family members and access to information on their preferred future location. Funded by EU humanitarian aid, and in partnership with the Danish Refugee Council (DRC) and the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), REACH intends to survey approximately 3,500 households and conduct 50 focus group discussions across 12 LGAs throughout Borno State where the information needs of the humanitarian sector are most acute.

Preliminary findings indicate that 70% of the IDPs surveyed so far plan to leave their current locations. Of those reporting an intention to leave, 80% intend to return to their areas of origin. However, over half of all IDPs interviewed, reported having never heard any news from their areas of origin. Findings also highlight security, access to food, and shelter as the top three key factors influencing IDPs’ movement intentions.

Once concluded, the assessment will help anticipate internal displacement flows, highlighting whether, when and where IDPs want to go. It will also help understand their current needs, vulnerabilities and coping mechanisms, and anticipate future challenges for those who intend to return or move to a new location. Final results of the assessment will be shared through individual factsheets per LGA, and a comprehensive report detailing key findings per population group.

In parallel, REACH is also carrying out camp infrastructure mapping of formal IDP camps in order to support site planning and the effective distribution of humanitarian assistance.

Access REACH Nigeria current and upcoming information products on this page.