Supporting civil society and local authorities and providing humanitarian assistance
In 2015, ACTED has continued to provide local actors in Tripoli, Benghazi, Misrata and Sabha with capacity-building and networking opportunities in order to support the local development of Libya. Civil society organisations (CSOs) were strengthened to enhance their political and civic participation, with a specific focus on youth, while inter-municipal cooperation and urban development planning were promoted. ACTED also started humanitarian interventions to assist the most vulnerable displaced and local families, due to the ongoing fights. ACTED has been actively involved in coordination mechanisms of both humanitarian and development interventions, to promote more targeted interventions.
Supporting civil society development and involvement in local development
In 2015, ACTED provided over 180 civil society organisations with the facilities and support they needed to perform technical trainings, organise networking events and debates and to raise awareness on topics as diverse as women empowerment, the environment and the psychological welfare of children. Through four active Resource Centres in Tripoli, Benghazi, Sabha and Misrata, ACTED provided guidance, support and funds to local organisations to implement their own projects through a dedicated “Quick Impact Project” programme so that organisations can play their role as development actors. ACTED also supported the cooperation and collaboration of all local actors, including CSOs and local authorities.
Laying ground to local development strategies
After the collapse of Gaddafi’s regime, supporting the establishment of a new and efficient local governance system became one of ACTED’s main priorities. The actions undertaken aimed at strengthening the cohesion between local stakeholders and at developing the capacities of local decision-makers in the fields of local administration. For instance, in the Municipality of Zawiya, ACTED facilitated cooperation between local and international actors to devise a ten-year plan to identify new resources and develop investments that stimulate sustainable economic growth. This “Local Development Strategy” engaged over 200 local actors from the civil society and private and public institutions who contributed their expertise to the project.
Emergency assistance to vulnerable IDPs and host communities
The persistence of armed conflict in Libya throughout 2014 and 2015 has led ACTED to adapt its activities to cater to the most urgent needs of vulnerable population, especially displaced people. ACTED assisted almost 20,000 vulnerable individuals from displaced and local host communities by providing either food items (Baten el Jabel) or hygiene and baby kits (Benghazi).
The lack of accurate and up-to-date information led ACTED and its partner IMPACT (through the REACH Initiative) to carry a Multi-Sector Needs Assessment across the country, which, in turn, fed Libya’s Humanitarian Response Plan for 2015-2016. Following this, ACTED decided to concentrate its future intervention in the Eastern region of Libya.
Enhancing local actors’ capacities and involvement in local development and continuing emergency support to vulnerable local and displaced communities
In spite of some political progress, materialised by the recent establishment of the Government of National Accord, Libya continues to experience political instability. This reinforces the need to support local authorities in the inception of local development strategies, using a participatory approach that involves relevant local stakeholders, especially civil society organisations and universities in the process. Regarding the humanitarian situation, despite some progress made in 2015, vulnerable internally displaced and host community households remain unable to meet their most basic needs. ACTED is committed to continue to respond to their needs through cash-assistance and water and sanitation interventions in 2016.
Improving local governance in a changing institutional framework
The fall of the Gaddafi regime was followed by an intense territorial decentralisation that transferred a large number of responsibilities down to local institutions, notably the Municipalities. Within the scope of its activities on local governance, ACTED organized two trainings designed to strengthen local institutions by helping them acquire structural and organisational skills they were missing. These trainings gathered 39 territorial executives and local representatives, including mayors, and were designed to give its participants basic skills on territorial organization, local public policies, strategic planning, project development and risk management, to only name a few.
Supporting civil society in times of crisis
In 2014, the situation has changed a lot and Libya has entered into a crisis of which the outcome is uncertain. Libya’s civil society has called for a democratic transition since 2011, but they are now paying for their participation in the debate. In 2015, ACTED responded to this evolution by building on its networks established through CIL in the previous year. This will include providing emergency assistance to Internally Displaced People, supporting local CSOs to respond to the crisis, and closely coordinating with international partners on how to best respond to this situation.
Partners in 2015 :
European Commission Humanitarian Aid & Civil Protection (ECHO), European Commission Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO), Ministère français des Affaires Etrangères et du Développement International (MAEDI), Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), Swiss agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), United Nations Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), World Food Programme (WFP)