IGAD Drought Disaster Resilience and Sustainability Initiative (IDDRSI) Strategy

The IDDRSI Strategy is aimed at addressing the effects of drought and related shocks in the IGAD region in a sustainable and holistic manner. The decision to end drought emergences was taken by IGAD and East African Community (EAC) Heads of State and Government at a Summit convened in Nairobi on 9th September 2011, following the severe drought that devastated the region in 2010/2011. The Summit took the bold decision to address the effects of recurring droughts on vulnerable communities in the IGAD region, calling for increased commitment by affected countries and Development Partners to support investments in sustainable development especially in the Arid and Semiarid Lands (ASALs). The Nairobi Summit assigned the IGAD Secretariat the role of leading and coordinating the implementation of the decision; and urged all countries to work together as a region and all concerned to do things differently, working concertedly and holistically, combining relief and development interventions, aimed at building resilience to future shocks.  

The preparation of the IDDRSI Strategy was an inclusive and participatory process that involved the staff of the IGAD Secretariat and IGAD specialized institutions as well as public and non-state actors in member states. The Strategy was further informed by consultations with other stakeholders commonly affected by drought or involved in responding to its effects, including CGIAR and UN agencies and development partners. The process of developing the Strategy was guided by the IGAD Strategy 2011 - 2015 and defined, in scope, rationale and justification, by consideration of the region’s SWOT and PESTLE analyses. The Strategy defines its vision, mission and overall goal, envisioning a region with communities free from vulnerabilities to drought emergencies. The strategy proposes operational and institutional implementation arrangements and a result based monitoring and evaluation system to track the progress of projects activities in the implementation of the initiative. 

IDDRSI a comprehensive and Holistic Approach

The IDDRSI Strategy recognises the need for a comprehensive and holistic approach to combating chronic food and nutrition insecurity and addresses the deep-seated poverty and environmental degradation to build the resilience of communities and households to the effects of droughts and other shocks in the region. The Strategy identifies 7 priority intervention areas , where the necessary investment and action will help build resilience through reducing the vulnerability of target communities to climatic and economic shocks. These priority intervention areas include ensuring equitable access and sustainable use of natural resources, while improving environmental management; enhancing market access, facilitating trade and availing versatile financial services; providing equitable access to livelihood support and basic social services; improving disaster risk management capabilities and preparedness for effective response; enhancing the generation and use of research, knowledge, technology and innovations in the IGAD region; promoting conflict prevention and resolution and peace building; strengthening  coordination mechanisms and institutional arrangements for more organised, collaborative and synergistic action as well as  improving partnerships to increase the commitment and support necessary to execute the objectives of the initiative. 

The Strategy serves as a common framework for developing national and regional programmes that will be designed to enhance drought resilience through building sustainability in the IGAD region. The Strategy will guide and inform the process of implementing the drought resilience initiative at the national, regional and international levels united and harmonised under the overall coordination and leadership of the IGAD Secretariat. The strategy, by design, recognises that while drought-prone communities face common challenges and are often interconnected through shared natural resources and regional trade and trans-boundary human and animal movements, individual IGAD member states may have their own specificities and areas of emphasis.