FAO.org

Home > Africa > Regional perspectives > Building resilience in the drylands
FAO Regional Office for Africa
©FAO/Seyllou Diallo

This initiative aims to improving institutional capacity for resilience and responding to disasters and crises at regional ,national and community level. In addition, it strengthens and improves early warning and information management.

It builds on current expertise and programmes and provide opportunities for innovation, exchange of knowledge, and inclusiveness (Gender, Youth, etc.), ensuring sustainability of humanitarian and development intervention.

Building Resilience in Africa’s Drylands

Populations in Africa are increasingly exposed to natural hazards (drought, floods, hurricanes, earthquakes, and disease epidemics), to human-made crises (socio-economic shocks, and conflicts) and to protracted crises (complex, prolonged emergencies that combine two or more aspects of the above-mentioned crises). These are threats not only to the livelihoods of vulnerable populations, but also to the achievement of the aspirations of the Malabo Declaration and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Agricultural growth and comprehensive food and nutrition security cannot be attained without increasing the resilience of vulnerable livelihoods to disasters and crises. In this context, the Regional Initiative on Building Resilience in Africa’s Drylands has the overall aim to strengthen the resilience of livelihoods to shocks, threats and crises in Africa’s drylands, while responding to crises when they occur.

Results in 2014-2015

Results were achieved in the countries of focus for 2014-15 (Burkina Faso, Chad, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Niger, Somalia, South Sudan and Zimbabwe). Through the Regional Initiative FAO also supported countries in the development of resilience strategies and plans.  Specific results include the following:

  •  Focus countries and sub-regions‘capacities were strengthened to provide regular information and early warning against potential, known and emerging threats through national capacity development.
  • In close cooperation with the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and Comité permanent Inter-Etats de Lutte contre la Sécheresse dans          le Sahel (CILSS), FAO promoted the implementation of the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) and the Cadre harmonisé that provide decision makers with evidence on the severity and magnitude of food insecurity.
  • FAO promoted a comprehensive resilience approach (Caisses de Résilience) integrating social protection, productive support and financial inclusion in amutually supportive way to foster opportunities at community level (particularly in support of vulnerable women and their organization), and promoted its implementation in the Sahel; as well as facilitated knowledge exchange on Pastoral Field Schools and Caisse de Resilience between the Sahel and the countries in the Horn of Africa.
  • Countries and regions affected by disasters and crises were supported to get prepared for, coordinate and manage timely, effective and gender-sensitive responses.

Way forward in 2016-17

In 2016-17, in line with country priorities and within the framework of the Malabo Declaration, through the Regional initiative FAO will further support countries and Africa regional institutions to strengthen the resilience of livelihoods with a focus on vulnerability reduction and prevention around 4 main areas:

  • Resilience policy and strategy development and implementation: FAO will provide support to the development of country risk profiles, resilience strategies and related investment plans.
  • Vulnerability analysis and resilience measurement: FAO will continue to support vulnerability mapping and analysis through Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) and Cadre Harmonisé, joint assessments, transboundary risk assessments, and the roll out of Resilience Index Measurement and Analysis (RIMA).
  • Vulnerability reduction at community and household level: FAO will continue to support the implementation of the “Caisses         de Resilience” approach at community level and develop the link between social protection, nutrition and resilience.
  • Preparedness, coordination and response to crises: FAO will further improve countries’ capacities to prepare for, coordinate and manage effective responses to disasters and crises affecting the livelihoods, food security and nutrition of vulnerable populations.
  • Finally, in partnership with AUC, RECs and subregional organizations, FAO will support and facilitate the exchange of resilience good practices and knowledge across countries and the region.