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USAID/OFDA Sahel Humanitarian Learning Exercise, 21-24 January 2014 in Dakar

As part of HELP (the Humanitarian Evaluation and Learning Project), Groupe URD will be facilitating 4 days of discussion about experiences and lessons from the Sahel since 2005. This event will bring together USAID/OFDA teams from Sahelian countries and Washington and their Sahel partners who will be able to discuss with the United Nations Regional Humanitarian Coordinator and with donors.

Since the beginning of the 90s, there have been an increasing number of food- and nutrition-related disasters in the Sahel. What have we learned from these crises? Vulnerabilities and inequalities have increased due to increased pressure on ecosystems, the impact of climate change, increased urbanisation, unprotected subjection to market forces and the complexity of relations between pastoral systems in crisis and agricultural areas. In parallel, new operational methods are being developed, such as approaches to livestock de-stocking in pastoral areas, cash-based approaches, the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), new insurance and market-based mechanisms, etc. How should the new situation in the Sahel be analysed and taken into account? In the context of repeated crises, how can the response to the short-term needs of individuals, communities, societies and systems be continually improved? How do social tensions, identity-based conflicts and even the sudden appearance of radical jihadist movements affect food security and the security of aid agency staff?

These are the questions that we will be tackling in Dakar on 21-24 January. Groupe URD has organised or facilitated other conferences in the region which have dealt with issues that are specific to the Sahel. Read more about: