A round-up of activities of the UN system in Somalia in May 2022

31 May 2022

A round-up of activities of the UN system in Somalia in May 2022


Business development | UNIDO helps promote Somali businesses in Italy

In collaboration with Somalia’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry and the Somali Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Enterprises Development Units, UNIDO organized the visit of a Somali business delegation to participate in business exhibitions in Italy. 

The visit involved 11 small- and medium-sized agricultural production enterprises taking part in a food and non-food processing and packaging fair known as ‘IPACK-IMA,’ as well as a fruit and vegetable exhibition known as ‘Macfrut.’ 

The Somali business representatives hosted booths showcasing Somali products and attended more than 100 business-to-business meetings on modern technology in the agriculture sector. The visit also resulted in the establishment of contacts with potential business partners and buyers. 

The visit received support from the UNIDO Investment Technology Promotion Office, located in Italy, and the Italian Agency for Development and Cooperation, which has been funding the ‘Agrotechnology development for economic growth in South and Central Somalia.’

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Drought Response | OCHA: More funds allocated for drought-affected communities
The Somalia Humanitarian Fund (SHF) allocated $20 million for immediate assistance to communities around the country which have been hard-hit by the drought and for replenishing funding for national non-governmental organization partners.
The funds will allow the scaling-up of the humanitarian response in six priority locations where the situation is rapidly worsening. The SHF is an OCHA-managed, multi-donor, country-based pooled mechanism created in 2010 to fund the most urgent life-saving interventions.
In addition to the SHF fund allocation, the UN has released $14 million from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund to respond to the drought.
Late last month, at a high-level round table on the drought in the Horn of Africa, co-hosted by OCHA and the European Union, in Geneva, donors pledged $1.39 billion for humanitarian and development support for the drought in Somalia, Kenya and Ethiopia. The funds are for food, nutrition, cash and health assistance, as well as fodder and medicine to keep livestock alive.

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Drought Response | IOM and partners provide immediate relief for 90,000 people

Amid the more than six million people currently affected by the drought in Somalia, some 770,000 have been forced to flee their homes in search of food, water and pasture for their animals. Their needs are rising fast as the drought worsens. 

IOM scaled-up its response and launched a Minimum Response Package (MRP), in partnership with UNICEF, WFP, the Danish Refugee Council and the Somalia Cash Consortium. 

Through the MRP, the partners aim to provide immediate life-saving relief for more than 90,000 newly-displaced people, including cash, plastic sheeting and hygiene kits. The MRP will also expand community-level access to water, latrines, health and nutritional services. 

Following initial planning discussions in April, IOM started household registration in May with more than 8,000 extremely vulnerable drought-affected households identified and registered in the first two weeks of the month.

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Resilience | UNDP leads assessment team after Waheen Market fire

In the immediate aftermath of the Waheen Market fire in Hargeisa, UNDP led a team of technical experts from multiple UN agencies to assess the damage caused by the major blaze. 

The team worked with the National Relief and Support Committee appointed by the President of Somaliland to develop a roadmap for site clearance, reconstruction and the recovery of livelihoods. 

Subsequently, a joint Government of Somaliland and UN report was presented to donors and recommended a comprehensive response with immediate, medium- and long-term actions, including support for vulnerable groups. The cost of reestablishing the market is estimated at $720 million, including the cost of associated infrastructure that will meet international environmental and safety standards.

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Women | UNFPA supports Somali midwife associations

UNFPA assisted in building the leadership capacities and advocacy skills of three Somali midwives’ associations and their members: the Somaliland Nursing and Midwifery Association, the Somali Midwives’ Association, and the Puntland Association of Midwives. 

The training for the three associations capacitated and empowered them in the promotion of the midwifery profession and Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH), as well as in advocating for the abandonment of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). 

Also, in early May in Hargeisa, UNFPA supported the Somaliland Nursing and Midwifery Association’s commemoration of the International Day of Midwifery.

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Livestock | FAO supports pastoralists with emergency livestock treatment

The drought in Somalia has had a huge impact on the lives of the rural pastoral communities which depend on livestock as their main source of livelihood. The drought, compounded with animal diseases, has killed many livestock and left others weak and emaciated.

To protect their livestock and maintain their household food security, FAO undertook a nation-wide emergency supportive treatment campaign, reaching almost 11 million livestock belonging to 275,000 vulnerable rural families. The treatments administered are intended to protect livestock from common drought-related diseases that can be lethal to an animal already weakened by drought.

Besides the emergency supportive treatment, FAO is also helping rural families with emergency cash and livelihood assistance to enable them to stay together and avoid psychosocial and physical risks that can emerge from such shocks.

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Development | UN-Habitat launches community action plan in Baidoa
Working with IOM and UNDP, UN-Habitat launched the Baidoa Community Action Plan (CAP) to help ensure improved access to basic services, peaceful co-existence and social cohesion between internally displaced people (IDPs), returnees and host communities in that district, located in Somalia’s South West State.
Around 500 to 1,000 IDPs move to Baidoa every week, causing a huge environmental impact, housing gaps, water shortage, hygiene and sanitation challenges, which this action plan will help address. The construction of police stations, roads, dams for water storage, markets and the installation of solar street lights are some of the priority infrastructure outlined in the CAP.
The plan serves as a guiding tool for humanitarian and development actors in their efforts to support local and state authorities and communities affected by displacement, the impact of drought, a lack of livelihood opportunities and post-COVID-19 recovery.

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Children | UNICEF helps prevent severe acute malnutrition in children

On a global level, UNICEF launched a ‘Child Alert’ on severe wasting – known as severe acute malnutrition (SAM) – which makes children more vulnerable to common childhood illnesses. Cases of severe wasting are sharply increasing around the world due to conflict and climate change, while the cost of food rises. 

In Somalia, SAM cases have increased by 50 per cent so far in 2022, compared to the previous two years. As part of its response, UNICEF scaled up nutrition responses in Baidoa and Banadir camps for internally displaced people to ensure early identification of SAM cases. In April, more than 24,000 children under five years of age were treated for SAM in 93 per cent of UNICEF-supported centres.

This year, UNICEF has treated 43 per cent of the targeted 263,600 Somali children for SAM. However, funding needs to be increased to meet this goal.

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Elections | UN welcomes conclusion of presidential election

The United Nations in Somalia welcomed the conclusion of the country’s presidential election today.

"I would like to congratulate the newly-elected President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud on his victory tonight, but also express our appreciation to the other candidates, and particularly outgoing President Mohammed Abdullahi Mohamed ‘Farmaajo,’ for respecting the outcome and for continuing the Somali tradition of embracing whoever wins and supporting them going forward," the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Somalia, James Swan, shortly after the vote.

The top UN official was speaking at the conclusion of the election, at the venue in Mogadishu known locally as the “hangar,” located near the Aden Adde International Airport, where he and other representatives of Somalia’s international partners had been invited.

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud won office on the third round of voting by the country’s parliamentarians, after some twelve hours of voting and counting. There had been close to 40 candidates standing for the office.

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