Cameroon faces multiple ongoing humanitarian crises, but low media attention, limited funding, and the dynamic nature of the crisis have so far impeded the quality of the response. Currently there are three complex humanitarian situations in the country: conflict and violence in the north region, hostilities in the northwest and southwest (NW/SW) regions, and the influx of refugees from the Central African Republic (CAR) into the eastern regions. Humanitarian needs are exacerbated by structural development weaknesses and chronic vulnerabilities, all of which pose challenges to long-term recovery.

The Far North region continues to be impacted by the Lake Chad Basin conflict and saw an increase in attacks by armed groups in 2020. Insecurity has disrupted health systems and worsened recurrent outbreaks of diseases such as cholera, measles, and poliomyelitis. The NW/SW regions became the scene of a major humanitarian crisis in November 2017 when the socio-political crisis turned into a low-intensity conflict. As a result, there are today over 706,000 Cameroonians internally displaced in the northwest, southwest, Adamawa, West and Littoral regions, and an additional 63,600 Cameroonians have sought refuge in neighboring Nigeria.

In humanitarian crises characterized by low funding availability, coordination and efficiency become paramount in order to streamline response efforts and to make efficient use of the available resources. As a result, strong information management capacities are needed for accurate and timely data to plan and coordinate the response. However, information management ranks often behind direct intervention and life-saving activities when funding shortfalls are experienced - even though they both depend on each other for successful outcomes. As a result, Cameroon faces a generalized lack of information management capacities in active clusters, sectors, and other coordination mechanisms, which translate into a low availability of reliable information to plan and coordinate the response.


Regional Stabilization Facility for Lake Chad Basin
The Lake Chad Basin Commission's (LCBC) Regional Strategy for the Stabilization, Recovery and Resilience (RSS) of the insurgency-affected areas aims to facilitate the implementation of stabilization programs by the LCBC Member States in the affected areas, including the complete restoration of state authority and the return of IDPs and refugees. To foster the engagement of all civil society actors in this initiative, a regional civil society organization (CSO) platform has been established under the umbrella of the LCBC Secretariat.

iMMAP works to design a directory and information management system (DIMS), providing support to the activities of the CSO Platform and the implementation of the Regional Stabilization Strategy, with the objective of enhancing CSO's operational capacities and facilitating their participation in critical decision-making. During the first year, the DIMS Project aims to identify all CSOs active in the Lake Chad Basin region (eight territories spread over Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria), map their areas of intervention and their operational and programmatic capacities. iMMAP will also design the architecture of a digital platform which will be launched during the second year of the project.
Enhancing Coordination and Response Capacities Through Information Management Support to Humanitarian Actors

iMMAP is implementing a nine-month project to contribute to the enhancement of humanitarian coordination and response capacities through IM support to the actors in Cameroon. It will facilitate the implementation of OCHA’s strategy to support the sectoral coordination in Cameroon. It will also contribute to two key objectives:

  • Strengthening sector coordination in priority regions for humanitarian intervention
  • Ensuring that the capacities for sector coordination and support to the field remain strong at national level.

In addition, this project will address information gaps and limitations that have been reported in the Humanitarian Needs Overview (HNO) 2021:

  • Build capacity of local actors to conduct evaluations according to humanitarian standards
  • Enhance the systematic exchange of data and evaluation reports among humanitarian actors
  • Support the coordinated multi sectoral needs assessments.

In order to achieve these objectives, iMMAP will set up an Intersectoral Information Management Support Unit (IIMSU) that will work closely with OCHA and the different coordination mechanisms (Clusters and sectors). The IIMSU will provide IM support tailored to the needs of the broad humanitarian ecosystem (coordination bodies, INGOs, LNGOs) through three core activities:

  • Deployment of Information Management Officers (IMOs) to fill critical IM gaps in the active Clusters in NW/SW regions;
  • Provision of IM services to the different coordination mechanisms at national and regional levels (OCHA, Clusters and Sectors)
  • IM capacity building open to all actors responding in Cameroon.

Through this project, information will be more accurate and shared timelier among actors, and the overall understanding of the crisis will be improved, thus leading to well informed decision-making, a fair utilization of available resources and enhanced response capacity.

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