Project Key Information
- UN-Habitat Project Title: Adkaysi
- Town/City: Burco, Afgoye and Jowhar
- Country: Somalia
- Anticipated start date 1st February 2024
- Estimated duration of project in calendar months: 4 Months
- Lead Organization Unit: UN-HABITAT, Somalia Programme
Brief Background of the Project
The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) is the agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all. UN-Habitat supports the urban poor by contributing to the transformation of cities into safer, healthier, greener places with better opportunities where everyone can live with dignity. As part of its mandate, the UN-Habitat implements various normative interventions for sustainable urbanization in Somalia. However, in the last three decades, Somalia has experienced two main trends; changes in climate evidenced by the adverse changes in weather conditions, and massive displacement of people to urban centers invariably further restraining limited capacities of government and communities. In 2023, an estimated 3.8 million people are affected by internal displacement directly.
The internal displacement accelerates urbanization trends in Somalia. Displaced people tend to populate existing, congested settlements or establish temporary sites in peri-urban areas seeking services, safety, assistance and access to jobs, housing, tenure security. This poses enormous challenges for government authorities to create livelihood opportunities, providing safety, access to basic services, justice and securing housing, land, and property rights.
Moreover, the larger case load of displacement so far has been absorbed by only a few major centres, such as Mogadishu, Afgoye and Burco. These urban areas face enormous pressure to cope with high rates of urban poverty with limited resources. The continuation of these trends’ risks worsening dynamics of local conflicts and pressure over scarce resources. In the current context, it becomes increasingly critical, to invest in better management of rapid urbanization and harness the expected benefits. New approaches such as implementing integrated spatial socio-economic development frameworks can contribute to improved resilience of governments, host communities, and displaced persons.
Afgoye in the South-West State, Jowhar in Hirshabelle State, and Burco in Somaliland have emerged as destinations for displaced populations. Afgoye and Jowhar are important trading hubs and have over centuries emerged as gateways to Mogadishu. These cities are confronted with a wide range of natural, human-made and hybrid hazards that have resulted in large scale disasters and disruptions. Recent studies as the 2020 UN Common Country Assessment and the 2022 Climate Risk Profile Somalia have shown that recurrent climatic shocks, armed conflict, and the lack of economic opportunities are key drivers of continued displacement and urban poverty. Displacement in these cities has resulted in social exclusion, spatial and economic marginalization, and discrimination, and has often caused tensions with the host community. This has aggravated the risk of new conflicts in an already fragile situation where gains in peacebuilding, stabilization, and recovery at stake.
The European Union as one of the largest donors in the Federal Republic of Somalia has embarked on the “Boosting Resilience and Adaptation to Climate Change (BREACH)” program to increase systemic resilience to climate change and food crises in Somalia. The EU has commissioned UN-Habitat to contribute to specific aspects under the three years. The Adkaysi (Resilience in Somali) project (2023-2026). It seeks to build resilience to climate change adaptation and promote social inclusion of vulnerable communities in Afgoye, Burco, and Jowhar. The City-Regions of Afgoye, Burco, and Jowhar are strategically located in Somalia’s urban system, have a substantial number of displacement affected communities, available land resources, and are committed to strengthen security of tenure for the displaced and other poor and marginalized communities. The effectiveness of durable solutions is dependent on the degree/ability of government to perform its functions, whilst on the other hand, on the communities’ ability to cope with and adapt to shocks occasioned by the adverse effects of climate change.
The Adkaysi project seeks to achieve the following outcomes:
Improved capacity of National, Regional, and City Governments to manage adverse effects of climate change induced rapid urbanization.
Enhanced community engagement in resilience action planning to secure livelihoods with regards to climate change induced aspects.
The project will contribute to the development and update long term urban resilience and urban action plans at the community level that are aimed at stimulating economic activities and improve liveability at the community level.
Action oriented urban plans related to displacement specific will address localized challenges and potentials to manage rapid urbanization and adapt to climate resilience. The plans and associated strategies link humanitarian and development aspects with regards to durable solutions for displacement affected and other vulnerable urban communities. They will support authorities and communities in the establishment, implementation, and monitoring of favourable polices and strategies.
UN-Habitat’s technical assistance is directed to enable participation and engagement of the vulnerable communities into local planning and decision-making processes, but also to capacitate local authorities to led on conditions for an enabling environment towards durable solutions for displaced people, economic recovery, strengthened resilience and social cohesion.
UN-Habitat will closely collaborate with government entities at the local, state, and federal level and with partners from the durable solutions community. Local level activities are directly planned and implemented through partnership agreements with regional implementing partners under the EU consortium.