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Humanitarian information management support remains an essential component in augmenting the capacity of the humanitarian partners responding to the crisis in north eastern Nigeria. This is specifically true because many of the partners do not only have multiple responsibilities, but also lack information management expertise. This has on many occasions proved to be an impediment to informed, coordinated and effective response. Effective, targeted information management support plays a central role and is necessary for informed, evidence-based decision-making necessary to respond to the needs of over 7.7 million people in need of life-saving assistance in the north east of the country. It does not only form the basis for coordination and decision-making, but also has a positive impact on how national and international resources are mobilized and utilized.
Since November 2016, iMMAP has been, and continues to provide information management support to ten humanitarian sectors responding to the northeast Nigeria crisis. This has been possible with support from US Agency for International Development Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance. The support has made it possible for iMMAP to identify, second, deploy and maintain a dedicated team of Information Management Officers (IMOs) who support the humanitarian clusters/sectors and their partners. The main objective of the support was to strengthen the information management capacity of the sectors in their response; to advance the mechanisms for regularly the needs of the people affected by the crisis; and to facilitate availability and access to quality, timely data to support the humanitarian coordination mechanism led by UN-OCHA. Additionally, in January 2018, a humanitarian information management training and capacity building program was started. A series of four training workshops conducted, focusing on the humanitarian principles, information management theory, the cluster/sector approach, tools, platforms and techniques. As of July 2018, and in close collaboration with UN OCHA, four rounds of training and capacity building had been conducted, benefiting close to 200 participants in all the three affected north-east Nigeria states.
Methodologically, the impact of the information management support is hereby presented based on three impact monitoring surveys that were conducted in August 2018. The first survey aimed to establish the impact and level of satisfaction with the IM support from among the members of the humanitarian community. The second survey sought to monitor the stakeholder satisfaction with iMMAP's Standby Partnership Program. The participants to this survey were exclusively representatives of the Sector Lead UN Agencies to whom the standby personnel are deployed. The third survey was directed to the 194 training and capacity building participants.
The findings point to positive short-term and medium-term outcomes including better gap analysis and understanding of the extent of the response to the crisis on a regular basis. The findings also indicate that the support enabled the humanitarian responders to work with quality, analytical and timely information to make evidence-based, life-saving humanitarian response decisions.
Most importantly was the realization that there was an overall improvement in the capacity of partners to identify needs, plan the response, monitor their interventions, cross-compare and report on cross-sector performance progress in a timely manner. New tools, new platforms, new methods of data capture, processing and availability have been a core part of the information management support services extended to the sectors. This has had a significant impact on response and performance improvement at an intra-sectoral and inter-sectoral level. It has also seen an overall improvement on humanitarian action through measurable, comparative improvement in effectiveness, response quality and efficiency. The support also enabled the provision of training and capacity building to humanitarian partners from all three states, working Federal and State government authorities, UN Agencies, national and international NGOs, the academia, private sector and civil society.
The report is organized in three sections. Section one presents and discusses the findings of the survey on overall IM support (administered and directed to all humanitarian partners). Section two presents and discusses the findings of the survey on the standby partnership program (administered and directed to the Sector Lead Agencies) and Section three presents and discusses the findings from the survey on information management training and capacity building (administered and directed to the different participants who attended the different training and capacity building rounds).