Kenya

East Africa Humanitarian Private Sector Partnership Platform - Newsletter | Issue 3 | April 2017

Format
News and Press Release
Source
Posted
Originally published

The EA HPPP supports systematic long-term private sector, UN, NGO, Government and community partnerships to address the impacts of natural disasters, emergencies due to conflict and complex urban and out-of camp displacement situations.

Private sector accompanies Relief Chief to drought-stricken Kenyan county

A United Nations team led by the Under-Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs Stephen O’Brien, government officials and HPPP chair Equity Bank visited the remote village of Bandarero in Moyale, Marsabit County on March 4 to assess and raise awareness of the effects of drought.

Many of the families they met said they had little access to water, their livestock had perished, and their children were struggling to stay in school.

“I am here to say that the international community stands with you, and together we will get through these difficult times. We must act early, together, now,” O’Brien told affected families.

The delegation witnessed firsthand the transfer payment system used to dispense cash to drought-affected communities through the support of Equity Bank in collaboration with the National Drought Management Authority.

The Hunger Safety Net Programme (HSNP) is active in 4 counties - Turkana, Marsabit, Wajir and Mandera - and targets 68,000 people.

Equity Bank supports cash transfers of KSH 234 million to drought-hit Kenyans

On 12 March 2017, President Uhuru Kenyatta underscored the importance of public-private partnerships in the mitigation of the impacts of drought on communities living in arid and semi arid areas in northern Kenya.

Presiding over the announcement that Equity Bank would disburse KSH 234 million to vulnerable households on behalf of the Government of Kenya, President Kenyatta noted that cash transfers offer recipients choices. “This will improve living standards for communities living in the arid and semi-arid lands,” he said.

The British High Commissioner to Kenya Nic Hailey lauded Equity Bank’s role in identifying and making payments to beneficiaries through the use of biometric technology. “Instead of donors deciding what is good for people, people are deciding what is good for themselves, whether they want to add on to their livestock numbers or start a small business to sustain their families. This is improving inclusion across Turkana,” he said.

The Hunger Safety Net Programme (HSNP) is a cash transfer programme designed for the extremely poor in the counties of Turkana, Marsabit, Wajir and Mandera. It is managed by the National Drought Management Authority under the Ministry of Devolution and Planning. The programme provides regular and emergency cash transfers to communities severely affected by drought. It is funded by the Government of Kenya, the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and Australian Aid.

Equity Bank disburses cash transfers to vulnerable families in remote areas. The Bank has engaged GPRS and VSAT technologies to ensure the cash is distributed. HSNP's Equity Bank payment system has proven to be effective, efficient and transparent.

Thuraya: Communicating for credible elections & effective water management

From restoring critical communications during and after natural disasters to coordinating emergency response, satellite technology often serves as the backbone to successful relief and support operations. Relief agencies are increasingly reliant on mobile satellite services (MSS) for their robustness and wide coverage to facilitate a timely and efficient humanitarian response.

Communicating for credible elections

Thuraya SatSleeve + and XT-PRO handsets are used to share and monitor fair election results over satellite communications. In East Africa, Thuraya is part of the HPPP’s Election Preparedness/ Contingency Working Group.

During Kenya's 2016 by-elections, Thuraya was contacted by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), the regulatory agency responsible for conducting and supervising referenda and elections. They needed to achieve full and immediate transmission of results, because a delay in the confirmation of election results and declaration of winners raises concerns over the credibility of the electoral process. Four by-elections were being held in county assembly wards that had limited or no terrestrial coverage.

A joint team from Thuraya and Airtel Africa created a 14-day support programme. IEBC election officers participated in training and a results simulation exercise. Thuraya also provided technical support on election day.

The results were comprehensive: Thuraya was able to confirm 100% transmission results from remote county assembly wards using Thuraya handsets, enhancing the credibility of the electoral process.

Monitoring groundwater for effective drought response To manage water scarcity in communities affected by drought, Thuraya works through various system integrators, using robust and secure M2M two-way communication terminals and services.

The Thuraya M2M FT-2225 terminal connects to water sensors that send data updates in real time to water management platforms over Thuraya’s satellites. This helps experts collect and analyze data with the goal of monitoring and controlling ground water levels for effective resource management in regions such as Africa and the Middle East.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.