Assessment in Awdal Region, Somaliland 11th to 15th Dec 2016



Poor Gu (April to June 2016) rainfall, locally significant floods, trade disruption, droughts and new and continued population displacement contributed to a worsening of the food security situation in Somalia compared to six months ago. In Awdal region Somaliland, the Guban pastoral livelihood zone remains in acute food security crisis (IPC Phase 3) as water and pasture depletes as a result of below average rainfall for two successive seasons (Gu & Deyr rains). In regards to this, READO launched a rapid assessment in Lughaye district Awdal region, (where it has presence and is currently responding to the food security crisis) to establish the gaps in the district as far as food security, livelihood and WASH gaps are concerned. This report highlights the key findings during the assessment.


Awdal region in Somaliland borders Ethiopia in the North West and South West, and Djibouti and the Gulf of Aden in the North. It consists of four districts: Baki, Boroma, Lughaye, and Zeylac. Despite physical access challenges posed by poor road conditions along its mountainous coastal terrains, Awdal is historically a peaceful region, which remains accessible to humanitarian organizations. The population of Awdal region is estimated at 673,264 (UNFPA 2014)

According to FSNAU the food security situation in Northwest Somalia has deteriorated from August through December 2016 as projected in most pastoral livelihoods given the forecast of below average Deyr rains. Forecasted below average Deyr 2016 rainfall has resulted into below average pasture and water conditions in most pastoral livelihoods and, consequently, affects livestock body condition and livestock production (milk) (FSNAU Technical Release October 2016). In Somaliland, Guban pastoral livelihood zone of Awdal Region in the northwest remains in acute food security Crisis (IPC Phase 3) due to lingering impacts of previous droughts coupled with faster than usual depletion of pasture and water. Moreover, in Awdal region, FSNAU assessments classified 70,000 in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) while 12,000 people in Emergency (IPC Phase 4) through December 2016 FSNAU Technical Release October 2016).

The short rains of 2016 Deyr season were below normal in most parts of the region further worsening severe drought situation in Somaliland. Consequently there has been a massive movement of the drought-affected population from Awdal region to other parts of Somalia including Boroma and Hargesia. The number of people in crisis in the region is expected to increase. The areas of dire need are the areas that have been in crisis for the past three years, which include Sanaag, Togdheer, and other regions. Somaliland authorities have announced for the droughts situation Somaliland.

The severe drought, which is presently affecting the major part of the Somaliland rural population, has been gathering momentum for the last two years. The failed Gu, Deyr and Karan rains of last two years has unleashed a devastating drought effect on the communities from Somaliland western regions of Awdal, Selel, Gabiley, Maroodijeex, Hawd, Saaxil and also from Eastern Sanaag. The populations in these regions have experienced a decimation of their livestock assets, drastic failures of their crops and a dwindling supply capacity of their water sources. However, in the other parts of Somaliland, which received relatively better rainfall during that period, has experienced an immigration of people and livestock from less fortunate areas have created severe pressure on both water and pasture resources. This has consequently created a generalized vulnerability situation of food and water shortage among all Somaliland rural populations. Recently a drought alarm was also raised in Togdheer, Sool and Sanaag regions because of the severe shortage of water and in some areas also pasture. That will increase drastically the population affected by the drought. The rural populations in western and eastern region of Sanaag have already experienced a heavy loss of their livestock assets.

The humanitarian response so far is very inadequate considering the magnitude of the gaps in the region. Somaliland government has already appealed to the international donor community, the relevant UN agencies and to the international charitable organizations to address the drought situation in Somaliland. Immediate food distribution, provision of clean drinking water, improvement of water supply infrastructure and medical support is urgently needed.


• Field Visit Assessment/ observation • Focus Group Discussions with the community • Key informant interviews with community leaders • GPS Photos


During the rapid assessment conducted by READO, in Awdal Region, were READO implementing projects and the following key findings were established:

• The livestock dead above estimated 2,500 goats as mentioned by drought-affected people.

• The total numbers who are severely affected by drought in Lughaye district is 7,500 HHs.

• In Gabiley we have seen a lot of influx IDP movement as a result of the drought-affected populations in pastoral people those affected by the droughts from Togdheer, Saaxil, Sool and Sanaag.

• Lack of health facilities of the displaced areas of Awdal region • Inadequate of clean water accessibility and poor pasture of livestock • Lack of livestock treatment which has led to livestock succumbing to diseases and eventually there death • Inadequate of education facilities in the Luhaye district of Awdal region.

• Poor wash facilities, lack of latrines and sanitation in areas like, Gargara, Lughaye, Osali and waraaba dhareere.

• Lack boreholes and need for rehabilitation of shallow wells


In light of the foregoing, addressing food security and live saving interventions should target rural, urban and peri urban areas in stress conditions in Awdal region? Support with direct building resilience, unconditional and conditional cash transfers could secure the survival of the most vulnerable community segments as interventions in agricultural inputs and cash for work restore communal assets and enhances livelihoods.


• Support livelihood opportunities on building resilience, through building capacities farmers in Awdal region and the provision of agriculture inputs (seeds and tools)

• Community assets rehabilitations like water catchments, feeder roads, canals, contour bunds, through conditional cash transfers and unconditional cash transfer for the elderly, lactating mothers and very vulnerable household who can’t engage in very intensive work.

• Create income employment opportunities for youth through business skills training especially creating fishery programme and provision of the fishery materials like (refrigerator, bouts, transportation and solar pans for using electric)

• Rehabilitation of boreholes and shallow wells.