High-level conference on Sahel-VOICE invited to speak
On June 18, Commissioners Georgieva and Piebalgs jointly hosted a high level meeting on the Sahel crisis with the aim of launching a new “Partnership for resilience”. The conference was attended by EU institutions and member states, the countries of the Sahel, donor governments, UN agencies and NGOs.
In a joint conference statement the participants agreed to launch a Partnership for resilience through a multi-stakeholder initiative (AGIR – Alliance Globale pour l'Initiative Résilience) in order to achieve a substantial and durable improvement in the resilience of the most vulnerable populations in the region.
NGOs were represented by VOICE and CONCORD (latter represented by CARE), as well as Oxfam, Save the Children, World Vision and Action Contre la Faim. Main points raised were:
• NGOs welcome the leadership of the European Union on the Sahel crisis and welcome the Partnership for Resilience.
• Resilience needs to be built from the household up to the national level
• It is important to act upon the emergency, but also to build up crisis capacity, including in development
• LRRD is needed to come to better resilience. LRRD has been talked about for a long time, but now it’s time to act; it will be smarter aid. The Multi-Annual Financial Framework (MFF) gives the opportunity to make LRRD programming a reality.
• The funding gap needs to be addressed (appeal: 41% funded). Emergency funding is needed across all sectors, including health, WASH, child protection, education, and livelihoods
• The Partnership for resilience should build on existing initiatives and involve national and international civil society in the further development and implementation of the partnership
• Dialogue is needed between donors, affected states and CSOs, when starting programming but also during implementation, to make sure resilience is really improved for the affected populations and vulnerable groups.
• It is important to support the plans developed by the national governments (e.g. by Niger) and work through national and local government and national NGOs- small-scale projects are working well and can be scaled up
• Democratic ownership and accountability are critical to success for the Partnership
For more information, please check:
- the Commission's website on the Sahel conference
- Conference paper Oxfam, Save the Children, World Vision and ACF: 3 priorities for addressing the emergency and investing in resilience