Building Peace Through Sustainable Access to and Management of Natural Resources – PAMANA

Building Peace Through Sustainable Access to and Management of Natural Resources – PAMANA

Tabacco Barn – a curing method using firewood in Lobule ‚Äď Koboko District (Photo Credit: Barnabas Samuel)

PAMANA: Cross-Border HDP Triple Nexus Project in South Sudan and Uganda

Conflict in South Sudan has resulted into people crossing over the border into Uganda. The situation in the Kivu Region of Eastern DRC as in South Sudan remains unstable. With this uncertainty over the last decade, there are a lot of cross-border movements and internal displacements, causing great suffering to communities, and increased humanitarian needs.

Today, over 1.4 million refugees live in Uganda, making it the third largest refugee-hosting nation in the world. South Sudanese make up the largest refugee population (882.058 people), followed by refugees from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) (418.369), Burundi (48.404) and Somalia (40.826). West Nile hosts 54% of the total refugee population in Uganda, concentrated in the districts of Adjumani, Arua, Koboko, Obongi, and Yumbe, where a total of 2.121.000 Ugandans live alongside 765.894 refugees or 36% of the local population. Both the refugees and host communities live in abject poverty and vulnerabilities in integrated settlements.

In South Sudan, over 4.5 million people have been uprooted from their homes, including 1.84 million internally displaced persons (IDPs), 2.5 million persons seeking refuge in the neighboring countries of Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Sudan; and over 202’000 seeking protection in UN bases in the country.

The volume of refugees in Uganda and IDPs/Returnee communities in South Sudan has caused a significant increase of conflict over and pressure on natural resources in both South Sudan and Uganda. Livelihoods and food security of host and refugee, IDP and returnee communities in South Sudan’s Central Equatoria State (CES) and Uganda’s West Nile (WN) sub-region mostly depend on Natural Resource, as most households are small-scale producers.

Overexploitation of Natural Resource have been exacerbating inequalities and risks for certain population groups and individuals increasing tensions within and amongst communities. Conflicts related to the access to and control over Natural Resources are some of the most prominent factors negatively impacting people’s ability to meet their immediate needs and pursue sustainable livelihood opportunities, especially among vulnerable host, refugee and IDP communities.

The Community Development Centre- CDC is implementing the 3-year Consortium Project – Building Peace Through Sustainable Access to and Management of Natural Resources in West Nile and Central Equatoria (PAMANA) ‚Äď with Caritas Switzerland as lead, Agency for Accelerated Regional Development (AFARD), and Organic Farming Advisory Organization (OFAO), with technical advice from Swiss-Peace and BOMA Project in Yumbe and Koboko districts, West Nile, Uganda and in Yei and Lainya Counties, Central Equatoria, South Sudan.

Following a Human Development Peace (HDP) nexus approach, this project aims to significantly reduce conflict over and pressure on Natural Resources in Central Equatoria State and West Nile Region through building local capacities for supporting the most vulnerable groups amongst the host, refugee and IDP communities (with a special focus on women), meeting their immediate needs and securing sustainable livelihoods in ways that promote peace, stability and gender-equality.

Project Name: Building Peace Through Sustainable Access to and Management of Natural Resources in West Nile and Central Equatoria (PAMANA)
Project Number: P210063/ P210064
Duration¬† December 01st /2021 ‚Äď November 30th 2024 (36 Months)
Geographic Coverage(Cities/towns and or countries) Koboko & Yumbe, West Nile (Uganda) and Yei & Lainya, Central Equatoria (South Sudan)
Target Groups and Beneficiaries 343 Members of local structures including local government structures, religious and traditional institutions, civil society organizations, and private sector actors; 5000 direct beneficiaries from most vulnerable groups amongst the host, refugee and Internally Displaced Persons’ (IDP) communities (with a special focus on women).
Counterpart/Consortium Organizations Caritas Switzerland (CACH) - lead, The Community Development Centre - CDC, Agency for Accelerated Regional Development (AFARD), Organic Farming Advisory Organization (OFAO), Swiss Peace, The BOMA Project (BOMA)
Donors: Austrian Development Agency, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
Project Budget  1’918’026 EUR        I Awarded by ADA: 1’500’000 EUR

Humanitarian-Development-Peace (HDP) Nexus (Triple Nexus) in the PAMANA 

For PAMANA project, HDP Nexus is defined in the following way:

  • Addressing immediate needs of the most vulnerable (humanitarian assistance)
  • Developing and supporting sustainable Natural Resource livelihood opportunities that take pressure off natural resources (development support)
  • Facilitating opportunities for diverse groups to come together to solve issues through information sharing, leadership training and conflict resolution skills (peacebuilding)¬†

In the¬†humanitarian component, the immediate needs of the most vulnerable groups are better met due to conflict-sensitive and gender-responsive humanitarian assistance. The¬†development component¬†develops and strengthen local capacities to create opportunities for medium and long-term livelihoods based on sustainable Natural Resource Management practices that foster self-reliance and resilience and enable peaceful coexistence. Under the¬†peacebuilding component, the understanding of conflict causes is increased, especially regarding Natural Resource Management (NRM). Moreover, the capacities of the target groups and beneficiaries are strengthened to facilitate dialogue and manage tensions to promote sustainable Natural Resource Management (NRM) and climate change adaptation in peace-conducive and gender-responsive ways. To fully achieve this outcome, the Community Development Centre ‚Äď CDC as lead on the peacebuilding component will be deploy the Hagiga Wahid Misinformation system to support communities to be able to manage information and misinformation in a way that diffuses tensions, and also contribute to updating the project context analysis‚Ķ Hagiga Wahid (Juba Arabic phrase for one truth) is Community Development Centre ‚Äď CDC‚Äôs SMS system which responds to rumors and misinformation. It is an interactive mobile SMS system that engages the local communities across the borders to counter rumors and misinformation to build peace and instill a positive behavioral change especially in the form of improved critical thinking skills where they question the credibility of any information they receive before sharing with other people. In 2020, it sent a total of 82,680 SMS to 6,890 subscribers in both WN and CES. PAMANA Target groups will receive training as community ambassadors on misinformation management, reporting and rumour/information verification, etc. Secondly, more target groups and direct beneficiaries will use community-centred media tools (Studio Salaam in South Sudan & Voices A to Z in Uganda ‚Äď established during inception period) to be able to discuss rumours and jointly find peaceful solutions. Over 200 PAMANA CCM listening groups will be established and with 1,000 SD cards and 500 speaker-Boxes distributed in the communities across West Nile and Central Equatoria ensuring reach to populations without time or access to radios. 48 radio talk shows and CCM programmes on the most pressing Natural Resource issues will be produced and broadcasted in Juba Arabic, Kakwa, Aringa, and English languages. Studio Salaam and Voices A to Z will produce and distribute 36 episodes during the project period; These will present information, vox pops/interviews with diverse community members in a way that listeners can consider viewpoints, challenges and solutions. Some of the peace building component activities includes trainings on women‚Äôs rights and community engagement meetings/peace forums with target groups to create an opportunity for the wider communities to discuss together NRM issues including those linked to gender equality and sexual exploitation and abuse and contribute to long-term peace and stability. In coming months, we¬†will be sharing¬†with you project implementation updates, learnings and community stories on PAMANA across West Nile (Uganda) and Central Equatoria (South Sudan)

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