People in Kajuru and Kachia districts in Nigeria’s Kaduna state are receiving support after a timely response by Start Network, an innovative humanitarian actor that typically disburses funds within 72 hours of a crisis alert.
Through a Start Fund alert raised by Start Network members, £274,780 in funding has been released to ameliorate displaced people’s needs, exacerbated by the ongoing conflict in these areas.
Start Network, which is made up of international, local, and national NGOs working in over 80 countries, have channeled the funds to ActionAid and Global Peace Development-local partners who are responding to the crisis. The armed conflict, which has claimed more than 45 lives, has been intensified by a prolonged drought and rising land disputes between nomadic herders and residents of Kaduna state. About 35,000 people have been impacted by this conflict, the majority fleeing their villages and relocating to shelters for people who are displaced – which are deemed safer due to the presence of security forces.
One major attack took place on 20 June 2022, affecting many communities that are already displaced. Following this, the region witnessed a spike in violent communal conflicts resulting in the killing of 48 people by armed bandits in Kajuru and Kachiaon one week later.
Funding from Start Network will support the people affected to recover quickly and build resilience. According to David Habba, Humanitarian and Resilience Manager at ActionAid, the £274,780 is essential to giving community members access to cash, water and sanitation, dignity kits for women, and non-food items, such as mats, blankets, water storage containers and mosquito nets.
“The attacks and conflict around Kachia and Kajuru are sadly reoccurring. People should not live their lives in perpetual fear. We are working with community leadership and groups to provide training that strengthen community systems and structures to identify, share information and respond swiftly when there are threats. We will also link these communities’ structures to key security formations within the areas.”
Esike Ebruke, Executive Director, Global Peace Development added, “We are very happy to have this intervention funded by Start Fund. Global Peace Development has presence and works in these communities. The communities look up to us when we talk about peace building, environment and community health, governance, and other matters.
The support from Start Fund makes it possible for us to be here for them in their most trying times. With this support, women and children who are most affected will be able to meet some of their basic needs like food, water and other materials like blankets. The intervention makes better the lives of the people who continue to bear the burden of the growing insecurity in Nigeria, especially women and children. We are very grateful.”
According to Serena Suen, Start Fund Programme Manager, the response has been timely and is expected to support the people affected, with majority being women, children, the elderly, and people living with disabilities. We would like to thank our members and their local partners who have been instrumental in assisting affected people by providing them the necessary essential amenities as early as possible, covering any identified gaps.
“This alert has demonstrated the clear need for innovative, gap-filling financing initiatives, such as the Start Fund, within the humanitarian sector. We are pleased a local organization like Global Peace Development is leading part of the response and we believe that a more balanced international aid system, which shifts power to those closest to the front-line, will generate more effective and appropriate responses for people affected by crises”, she said.