A round-up of activities of the UN system in Somalia in November 2021

1 Dec 2021

A round-up of activities of the UN system in Somalia in November 2021


Humanitarian | OCHA facilitates joint statement on worsening drought

On 18 November, OCHA facilitated the release of a joint statement on the worsening drought in the country. The Federal Government of Somalia and the humanitarian community are alarmed at the rapidly worsening drought. Climate projections show that Somalia is on the verge of a fourth consecutive failed rainfall season and is at the risk of a potentially extreme situation by April 2022. About 2.3 million people are ravaged by serious water, food and pasture shortages. The lack of access to safe and potable water as well as hygiene and sanitation facilities has heightened the risk of water-borne diseases. Nearly 100,000 people have abandoned their homes in search of food, water and pasture for their livestock, exposing their families to the danger of conflict over the diminishing resources.



Livelihoods | UNHCR supports youth with vocational skills training

In November, UNHCR through its implementing partner - the Galkayo Education Centre for Peace and Development - supported 145 vulnerable young people through the facilitation of a six-month Vocational Training in Puntland and Galmudug states. The participants received hands-on training in electrical installation, hairdressing, beauty, tailoring and hospitality management among other skills. The training aims at giving vulnerable youth the skills that will facilitate their reintegration and enable them to contribute to their daily lives and become self-reliant. UNHCR is working towards increasing the availability of skilled labour for a sustainable future for vulnerable communities.



Criminal Investigation | UNODC enhances criminal investigation capacity of Somali police officers

In November, another 20 police officers and four prosecutors, including three female police officers and one female prosecutor, from Jubaland and Hirshabelle graduated from the first course of the Investigator Development Pathway, which is a training course developed by UNODC to enhance the criminal investigation capacity of police officers and criminal investigators across Somalia. In October, 27 Officers, including two female officers, from Puntland, Jubaland, Hirshabelle, and South West State also graduated from the first course.The Investigator Development Pathway training course has been developed, and is being implemented, as part of the UNODC Criminal Investigation Program for Somalia, funded by the U.S. Department of State – Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs.



Finance | UNIDO supports Somali businesses in establishing partnerships

Thanks to the fruitful cooperation established between UNIDO and several stakeholders, such as the Ministry of commerce and industry ( MoCI), the Somalia Chamber of Commerce and Industry( SCCI) and the Italian agency for development cooperation (AICS),an important partnership was established between the Somali Cooperative Gaaloge and the international brand, Case New Holland (CNH). This will allow a technology upgrade in the Somali agro-industrial framework as well as the increase of turnover, new jobs, and new trade opportunities was made possible thanks to the entrepreneurship development support provided by Enterprise Development Unit (EDU) in Baidoa, the financial assistance provided by IBS Bank and the business matchmaking support furnished by UNIDO’s Italian Investment and Technology Office (ITPO).



Emergency | FAO supports Somali government in desert locust monitoring and control activities

Somalia has made great gains in suppressing one of the largest desert locust upsurges in history. For almost two years, FAO has worked closely with the government to control the spread and reduce the devastation caused to rural livelihoods across the country through ground and aerial monitoring and spraying, as well as livelihood recovery to affected communities. Now, FAO is supporting the government to take the lead in managing the situation and also future upsurges thanks to a new facility in Qardho, Puntland. It is dedicated to desert locust monitoring and control activities and will act as a hub for the region, helping with any resurgence in the future. With FAO’s support, the new government-run facility is crucial to help promote recovery and restoration of food security and livelihoods, not only for Somalia but for the whole region.



Peace and Poetry | UNDP supports Somali poetry awards that promote women poets

The first annual Home of Somali Poetry Awards, supported by UNDP, were presented as part of an initiative to preserve and promote Somali poetry, advocate for women's rights and bring people together around a shared cultural heritage. The winning poems, chosen by a panel of new and established names in Somali literature, dealt with themes of unity, freedom and colonialism. The next Home of Somali Poetry activity will bring women poets and upcoming women photographers and videographers together to collaborate on works that express how they feel about life for women in Somalia and issues of importance to them, with exhibitions planned for December and January.



Gender-Based Violence | UNFPA facilitates cash assistance for the mitigation of gender-based violence

In 2021, Somalia witnessed a catastrophic increase in the number of vulnerable women and girls exposed to Gender-Based Violence (GBV) risks. Natural disasters and armed conflicts resulted in multiple displacements, forced evictions, and the destruction of livelihoods, health facilities, GBV service sites and schools. 

To mitigate the unprecedented and complicated humanitarian emergency in Somalia, the GBV Area of Responsibility (AoR) and Cash Working Group joined their efforts to understand how to better mitigate and address GBV risks of vulnerable women and girls. In November 2021, UNFPA Somalia released a learning brief on Cash Assistance for Mitigation of Gender-Based Violence, showcasing the benefits of using Cash and Voucher Assistance as an approach to address and meet a multitude of immediate needs of women and girls in Somalia.



Humanitarian | UNICEF provides humanitarian support to displaced families in Galmudug state

Conflict has forced 100,000 people to flee Guriceel in Galmudug state to 28 remote settlements. Among the displaced are 1,000 unaccompanied children and 2,000 persons with disability. The conflict has resulted in school closures, affecting an estimated 10,000 children, 40 percent of whom are girls.

In response, UNICEF provided 24 tons of Interagency Emergency Health Kits, acute watery diarrhea kits, medicines, and medical equipment to support the IDPs for three months. Some 16,200 IDPs were provided with water through trucking and 9,000 received hygiene kits. 

In Galkayo, 1,500 households received hygiene kits such as soap, buckets, jerry cans, aqua tabs, and sanitary pads. A bladder water tank was also installed for safe water storage and 21 social mobilizers trained to communicate critical and lifesaving messages through local radio and television.



Peace, stability and recreation | UNMAS promotes sports to raise awareness on the dangers of explosive hazards 

In October and November 2021, UNMAS Somalia organized a series of advocacy sports events in Mogadishu. The events were part of a five-year Safe Ground campaign developed to raise awareness and resources for the victims and survivors of armed conflict through the promotion of sports.

In addition, the events celebrated the mine action services’ work of clearing the sports village of mine hazards and the rehabilitation of the Mogadishu National stadium, highlighting the role that mine action services plays in stabilization efforts aligned to Somalia’s Transition Plan.

Over 200 participants took part in sports matches including football, basketball and running races, targeting young girls, boys and persons with disabilities (PWDs). The event also provided a forum for Explosive Ordnance Risk Education (EORE) sessions in Somali language after each game.



Resilience | New WFP Somalia strategic plan approved

In November, the WFP Executive Board approved the new WFP 2022-2025 country strategic plan for Somalia. Embodying the humanitarian, development and peacebuilding nexus, this is a roadmap for WFP to further develop its dual approach to Zero Hunger in Somalia: saving lives by meeting immediate humanitarian needs, while also changing lives by empowering Somalis and strengthening national institutions to build long-term, self-sufficient resilience. 

The country strategic plan builds on WFP’s strong and growing partnership with the Government at federal, state and local levels. It was developed through extensive consultation with the Government and other stakeholders across the country, and aligns with Somalia’s own National Development Plan as well as the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework for Somalia. The plan will come into effect from January 2022. 



Security Council | UN Special Representative for Somalia briefs UN Security Council

On 17 November, the UN Special Representative to Somalia, James Swan, briefed the UN Security Council on Somalia’s political and developmental situation. Mr Swan welcomed progress made so in the electoral process and urged for the swift completion of the House of the People elections and for a list of seats reserved for women to be published as well as the assurance that the women’s 30 per cent quota in Parliament is attained. He stressed that women’s full inclusion and representation in political life is key for Somalia’s sustainable peace and development. The UN Special Representative noted that the ongoing delays in the electoral process “continue to stall progress in other critical areas and hamper the achievement of national priorities beyond the elections, such as governance, security, and development.” He also spoke of the “dire” humanitarian situation in Somalia, “compounded by conflict, displacement and disease outbreaks.