FAO Regional Office for Africa

FAO underscores importance of Peacebuilding Fund with regional workshop in Nairobi

Raising awareness for greater understanding of links between conflict, peace and food security

Photo: ©FAO

20 August 2019, Somalia - The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) held a workshop on “The Peacebuilding Fund – FAO engagement and opportunities” in Nairobi, Kenya on 29-31 July, 2019. Organized by FAO’s Emergency and Resilience Division and the Agricultural Development Economics Division and hosted by the FAO in Somalia Office, the workshop aimed to raise greater awareness on the Peacebuilding Fund’s (PBF) policies, procedures and related funding opportunities.

FAO's work has for decades supported peace and promoted social cohesion, and with the approval in 2018 of the “Corporate framework to support sustainable peace in the context of Agenda 2030”, its initiatives in this context are gaining increasing recognition. In light of this, FAO Country Offices have considerably stepped up their efforts in mobilizing PBF funding over the past few years, particularly given increased investments in it over recent years (USD 500 million budgeted for 2017-2019, with USD 200 million allocated in 2019).

At the country level, developing and implementing PBF projects has proved informative for adopting innovative approaches to FAO’s work in fragile and conflict-affected contexts. “The workshop demystified our work on contributing to localized peace”, said Felix Dzvurumi, Head of Programmes for FAO in South Sudan. “It showed that understanding the local context and designing interventions that take into account local drivers of conflict and peace are critical for designing PBF projects, and for good programming in general. Irrespective of the programming area – whether it be pastoralism, natural resources management or food security – we should be focusing on the causes of conflict and not just the symptoms.”

Participants discussed the central tenets of PBF project development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation, including the imperative of conducting conflict/context analyses and ensuring projects are designed following a “peacebuilding logic”.

The workshop also provided practical guidance on drafting PBF concept notes, project documents and administrative clearance processes. Most importantly, during the two-and-a-half-day workshop participants shared best practices and reflected on their own experiences from recent PBF submissions and ongoing projects.

Around thirty staff attended from FAO offices in the regional Office for Africa (RAF), the Resilience Hub of the Subregional Office for Southern Africa (REOSA), the Resilience Team of East Africa (RTEA), Cameroon, Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gambia, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Somalia, South Sudan, the Sudan and Yemen.