Friday, Oct 30, 2020

August 12, 2020 (Obock, Djibouti): A team from IGAD- The Intergovernmental Authority for Development- made a visit on the 12th of August to the town of Obock-(Republic of Djibouti) to hand over a donation consisting of face masks and sanitary gel for the refugees in the Markazi camp as part of the efforts or actions to prevent the spread of COVID 19 virus. The donation was officially transferred to the authorities of the Prefecture of Obock and to officers of the National Office for Assistance to Refugees and Displaced persons (ONARS) in the presence of members of the refugee community.

This visit by the IGAD team was an opportunity to learn first-hand about the extremely precarious social conditions of the migrant populations in the Obock region.

The visit of the IGAD team to Obock was a continuation of   field visits undertaken at Holl-Holl refugee camp and Aour Aoussa Migrant center in the Ali Sabieh Region, in the southern part of the Republic of Djibouti, in the course of June and July 2020 by the Executive Secretary of IGAD His Excellency Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu. During these visits, the Executive Secretary of IGAD handed over similar donations of sanitary equipment to demonstrate the solidarity and IGAD's commitment to mitigate the impacts of the COVID 19 pandemic on vulnerable groups such as refugees and migrants.

While visiting Obock, the IGAD team IGAD witnessed various challenges and identified the humanitarian expectations and the needs of the vulnerable populations.

Obock Region, located in the northern part of the Republic of Djibouti, is a major migratory route and crossing point for thousands of migrants from IGAD Countries.

The humanitarian situation of migrant is particularly worrying, especially in the current context of the Covid 19 pandemic.

Finding durable solutions to the migrants and refugees remains an absolute priority.  And IGAD will continue to exert concerted efforts to ensure the effective implementation of regional strategy for COVID-19 response   and better coordination between the Member States will.

Dec. 11, 2019 (ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia): The Director of Health and Social Development of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD)-Ms Fathia A. Alwan, and the Health Director General of the Ministry of Health of Ethiopia-Dr. S. Tadesse, this morning inaugurated a cross border collaboration orientation meeting to establish inter-country referral mechanism among Member States.

 Participants to the meeting are:

  • Various actors from member states including National Tuberculosis managers, members of the national Country Coordination Mechanism (CCM) and members and District Health Offices at the border areas;
  • Sub recipient stakeholders such as the UNHCR country offices from the region, the Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS) and the Administration for Repatriation and Returnees Affairs of Ethiopia (ARRA); and
  • Refugee camps operations.

The overall objective of the meeting is to strengthen collaboration strategies across border areas through revitalisation of already existing and established cross border platforms while improving linkages between refugee health settings and cross border areas thanks to the grant received from the Global Fund.

Strengthening regional coordination and collaboration for effective HIV, TB and Malaria service delivery in the cross-border areas and refuge settings is among the priority focus of the IGAD HIV, TB and malaria strategic plan 2018-2025’, according to the Director of the Heath and Social Development Division at IGAD.

The Global Fund grant has a component for cross border collaboration, and which is aimed ‘at facilitating continuum of care across the border areas and improving of health collaboration through revitalising the coordination mechanism and having functional referral mechanisms’, Ms Fathia A. Alwan also said in her opening remarks.

By the end of the cross border collaboration and orientation meeting, participants would have agreed on:

  • The role and responsibilities of a coordination committee;
  • The operation modalities for the cross border collaboration;
  • A country plan for rolling out the cross border health collaboration;
  • A joint plan (pairing) and milestones/deliverables in line with project work plan; and
  • A validated Referral Form.

The grant from the Global Fund is implemented by IGAD as the principal recipient and UNHCR, ARRA, and KRCS as sub recipients through already identified sub-sub recipients in 52 refugee camps located in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda and cross border collaboration activities in all IGAD member countries.


July 03, 2019 (DJIBOUTI, Djibouti): On behalf of the regional organisation’s Executive Secretary, the Director of the Health and Social Development Division of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Ms. Fathia A. Alwan, signed a grant agreement with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Geneva on June 26.

UNHCR is the sub recipient for the components of the grant which will be implemented in 22 refugee camps and settlements in Djibouti, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda. It is a 33-month grant with a value of about US$ 2.2 million whereby the effective date of implementation is July 2019 and end date on March 2022.

IGAD along with member states and stakeholders developed a proposal on the multi country TB interventions among refugees in Eastern Africa and submitted it to the Global Fund (GF) on 30 April 2019. The GF Technical Review Panel and Grant Approval Committee found the proposal technically sound and robust, and recommended it for funding. After which the Global Fund approved the US$ 7.5 million proposal on Multi country TB Interventions for Refugees in Eastern Africa.

IGAD and the Global Fund signed the grant agreement mid May 2019. Agency for Refugees and Returnees Affair in Ethiopia (ARRA), the Kenya Red Cross Society and UNHCR ARRA, KRCS and UNHCR will continue to be the sub recipients for the new grant. IGAD signed Principal- Sub recipient grant agreement with ARRA and KRCS and the implementation of the grant in Ethiopia and Kenya has started in April 2019.

The implementation of the first IGAD TB-HIV grant by the Global Fund ended in March 2019 with successful achievements. Along with the Agency for Refugees and Returnees Affair in Ethiopia (ARRA), the Kenya Red Cross Society and UNHCR, the grant was implemented in 49 refugee camps in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda.


05 April 2019, KAMPALA (Uganda): The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) this morning closed a Knowledge Management (KM) and community of practice workshop on health in Kampala in collaboration with the John Hopkins University’s Knowledge for Health Project (K4Health) that is funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

The KM workshop reviewed and validated the IGAD KM Assessment Report, and also set the base for a KM for Health Strategy and the establishment of a Documentary Repository and Sharing System for health.

One of the main aims of this workshop was to address knowledge management gaps identified during the KM Needs and Gaps assessment that was conducted in August and September 2018. But also, this five-day workshop was an occasion to train the 35 participants drawn from IGAD member states and IGAD secretariat on basic principles, processes and tenets of Knowledge Management (KM).

 Ms. Hilina Dejene Desalegne, Monitoring and Evaluation Expert at Policy, Plan, Monitoring and Evaluation Directorate-Federal Ministry of Health Ethiopia found the training sessions on how to use knowledge management for health very useful. “We were already using knowledge management in a somehow traditional way, but starting from now on I will use and apply the different steps and sessions I learnt here to my day-to-day activity to improve generation, collection, analysis, synthesis and sharing of health data from national level to the sub-national level”, she said.

 “The uniqueness of this training is astounding to me because in a such short-period, it made me understand that “an effective KM for health” is the combination of using/learning from decades of published knowledge in KM field, the application of KM best practice tools and the utilization of technology for real time results in a systematic way”, according to Abdullahi Ismael, Head of Monitoring and Evaluation at the Ministry of health of Somalia

 One of the trainers, Cheryl Lettenmaier – Kampala-based Regional Representative of The Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, said her satisfaction to see very lively participants and did contribute a lot to the training, the review of the summary report on the IGAD Health Information and KM Needs, as well as to the initiation of the KM for health strategy.

 In her closing remarks, Fatuma Adan on behalf of the Director of health and social Development Division, thanked Member States and IGAD Secretariat staff for their stewardship in putting together the draft vision, goals and objectives that will be incorporated onto the draft of a Regional Knowledge Management for Health Strategy. “Another key success was the establishment of a community of practice on knowledge management for health, a WhatsApp group and folders in the Google drive”, she said. She encouraged Member States to actively participate in the KM for Health WhatsApp group in order to finalize the KM for Health Strategy and the KM assessment report.

 She also noted that member states and the IGAD secretariat were trained on the basics on knowledge management using a roadmap developed by Knowledge Management for Health project ( The tools in this website are available for use by member states in establishing KM practices in their countries. Participants were encouraged to use the tools to establish systematic structures for KM for Health in their countries.

 In conclusion, IGAD committed to continue with resource mobilization on behalf of member states in order institutionalize KM practices in every programmatic activity.

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