IOM, in partnership with local civil society, the Government of Myanmar and international actors, strives to improve the living conditions of, and support durable solutions for, internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Rakhine, Kachin, Shan and the South-East of Myanmar, while addressing the drivers of irregular migration and displacement by building resilient communities and strengthening preparedness and response systems.
Internally displaced, crisis-affected, and vulnerable populations including potential victims of trafficking.
The overall objective of the camp coordination and camp management (CCCM) support and capacity building in Kachin and Northern Shan States project is to ensure improved living conditions within the Non-Government Controlled Area (NGCA) IDP camps, reduce exposure to major protection risks, particularly for the most vulnerable groups including women, children, people with specific needs and the elderly. The specific objective is to contribute to improved management and coordination of humanitarian assistance within IDP camps in NGCA and hard to reach locations as a result of improved management of camps by designated/de facto camp management agencies. IOM will:
- Support local actors in CCCM capacity development to respond to local displacement, especially in Rakhine and Shan States;
- Provide CCCM assistance in localized displacement, especially with regards to information management and protection;
- Support IDP populations during their transition to reaching durable solutions.
Information forms a foundation for both government planning, agency programming and inter-agency coordination. As such, the quality and timeliness of information available to decision-makers is a crucial factor in achieving the objective of maximizing performance, accountability, and humanitarian impact. Actively managing information is vitally important because it improves the speed and accuracy of the information delivered, creating a shared frame of reference that enables decision-makers to coordinate and plan effective response programming. Through the Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM), IOM aims to provide relevant and timely information to authorities, humanitarian actors and coordination bodies in order to make programmatic and strategic decisions, and increase coordination to make the best use of available resources. IOM will carry out the following activities:
- Establish DTM to support the government and humanitarian community to systematically generate reliable data on IDPs in Rakhine, their needs, and any future disaster-affected populations;
- Monitor flows between sites and from sites to places of origin in Rakhine;
- Identify potential trends and risks of human trafficking.
The access and protection environment in Rakhine State has significantly deteriorated since August 2017. The continuous conflict has resulted in significant increases in geographical and financial barriers to accessing health care for crisis-affected communities in Rakhine State, stateless Muslims as well as ethnic Rakhine, Mro, Daingnet, Hindus etc. as well as difficulties for service providers. Affected communities cannot access many health services and the Township Health Department is not able to provide health services regularly. IOM is planning to support affected communities in Northern Rakhine State, and Central Rakhine through:
- Supporting mobile clinics;
- Outreach services;
- Minor renovations of health care facilities;
- Distributions of medical supplies and equipment;
- Developing a health emergency preparedness plan;
- Emergency medical referral services;
- Health education and promotion activities;
- Capacity building training to community-based health workers;
Since the end of 2018, the upsurge in violence in Rakhine State has led to civilian casualties and the destruction of property that has spread to nine townships of Rakhine State (Buthidaung, Kyauktaw, Maungdaw, Minbya, Mrauk-U, Myebon, Pauktaw, Ponnagyun, Rathedaung) and Paletwa Township in neighbouring Chin State. Ann and Kyaukphyu townships have been affected at certain points. The conflict has led to a significant displacement of people, some for extended amounts of time and some for short periods, with people fleeing violence subsequently returning to their homes within a few days or weeks. More than 32,000 people remain displaced in 112 sites according to government figures. Many IDPs remain displaced with significant needs in terms of shelter and non-food item (NFI) support. IOM plans to:
- Provide NFI and Shelter support to 30,000 displaced in Rakhine State;
- Pre-position shelter materials and NFIs for further displacement in Rakhine;
- Develop a cooking fuel supply chain for IDPs in Rakhine State.
Address the drivers and longer term impacts of crises and displacement through investments in recovery and crisis prevention
Internally displaced and crisis-affected individuals, host communities, and government actors.
IOM seeks to improve the cohesion and stability of the conflict-affected and disaster-prone communities in Rakhine through linking protection, health and disaster risk reduction (DRR) related interventions with community stabilisation. The intervention aims to build communities that are resilient against natural disasters, climate change, social and economic stress. IOM will support inclusive community decision making through democratic community processes and encourage a lively civil society. In addition, IOM will support communities and the government in targeted infrastructure development, supporting economic growth and resilience. IOM will:
- Develop community action plans through inclusive, participatory processes;
- Implement community-identified actions including livelihoods promotion, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), women-focused interventions, skills development, community infrastructure improvements;
- Build community cohesion and foster engagements between different ethnic communities;
- Address the needs of and increase the inclusion of youth;
- Increase access to government services.
In order to support the Government of Myanmar better understand the circumstances of displaced populations in need of assistance as well as the various human mobility that takes place in and out of displacement sites, IOM Myanmar will seek to provide practitioners with tools to gather significant amounts of data, through its Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM). IOM's DTM will be used to monitor displacement and population mobility during times of conflict or natural disasters, assess vulnerabilities, challenges and priorities of affected persons, and will systematically capture, process and disseminate information to partners to better understand the movements and evolving needs of the affected population. In this regard, IOM will:
- Support the government in understanding the needs and intentions/aspirations of IDPs;
- Monitor the flow of displacement streams across the country to facilitate the development of information tools and products that enhance the capacity of the government to make evidence-based decisions in emergency, recovery and development contexts;
- Monitor potential returns and identify the needs of IDP returnees;
- Monitor potential migration protection related issues, especially the risk of human trafficking.
IOM's engagements on durable solutions seek to end displacement situations of individuals, households, communities or other groups displaced by a crisis through the provision of immediate and longer-term support, in-line with relevant frameworks on displacement and durable solutions. The sustainable resolution of displacement is achieved when displaced populations no longer have specific assistance and protection needs that are linked to their displacement and such persons can enjoy their human rights without discrimination resulting from their displacement. IOM's Progressive Resolution of Displacement Situations Framework (PRDS) adopts a broader, more inclusive approach which integrates mobility dimensions towards progressively resolving displacement situations, recognizing that complex crises have created protracted displacement situations that defy achievement of durable solutions as currently understood. The PRDS Framework outlines four programmatic pillars which support progression towards durable solutions. These include: (1) protection, safety and security; (2) an adequate standard of living (access to adequate food, water, housing, health services and education); (3) access to sustainable livelihoods and employment; and (4) inclusive governance.
With the adoption of the National Strategy on Resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and Closure of IDP Camps and initiatives undertaken by the government and the military in 2019 for the return of IDPs in Kachin state, support to the realization of solutions to displacement in line with international principles will remain a key priority in 2020. With active armed conflict ongoing in Rakhine, the situation does not appear conducive to large-scale solutions. However, opportunities for potential small-scale solutions may surface in some areas. As such, IOM will look into improving the connectivity between target villages with road and bridge construction, included in cash-for-work activities. There will be a focus on income-generation, including skills and business training, information and technical assistance. Other benefits will include enhancing beneficiaries ability to advocate their needs to the government or CSO actors and to develop analytical skills to understand the broader context of their communities. Activities will include:
• Implement resilient community development strategies to provide durable solutions for IDPs;
• Provide access to livelihood and skill development trainings and capacity development initiatives;
• Support the strengthening of the market infrastructure;
• Support access to health, education and other government services.
The provision of health aspects throughout Rakhine State is complex and multifaceted, resulting in services being provided in an inconsistent and patchwork manner. Although the referral pathway has improved, there are inconsistencies in the way that medical authorities apply established protocols which contributes to inequitable access and services. The primary aim of the proposed activities is to increase the availability of and accessibility to essential health care services of communities living in conflict-affected and hard to reach areas. The proposed activities have been developed to ensure flexibility to respond to humanitarian needs as the situation in Rakhine evolves and also to contribute towards the fulfilment of the recommendations on the final report of the Rakhine Advisory Commission (RAC) and the Ministry of Health and Sports (MoHS) National Plan. Activities will include:
- Mobile clinics support: IOM will provide financial, logistical and pharmaceutical support to the existing Township Health Department’s mobile teams. In addition, IOM will operate mobile clinics in line with the State Health Department’s monthly operational plan;
- Outreach services;
- Minor renovations of health care facilities;
- Supply on medical and distributions of medical supplies equipment;
- Health emergency preparedness plan.
IOM provides technical provides community-based psychosocial activities to rural communities through volunteers and staff as well as mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) technical support to protection- and health-focused civil society organizations (CSO) in Myanmar. IOM's MHPSS support aims to improve family and social cohesion and psychosocial well-being of conflict-affected individuals and communities in low resource and low access areas. IOM MHPSS activities include:
- MHPSS awareness-raising sessions on stress management and coping skills through interactive games and activities to support the coping capacity and resilience of the isolated communities;
- MHPSS activities that address well-being, harmful social norms and gender-based violence;
- Community-based psychosocial activities that enhance awareness on safe migration and prevention and response to trafficking through interactive activities and information sharing;
- Psychological First Aid Training for Basic Health Staff, community leaders, community members, teachers and midwives;
- Psychological First Aid (PFA) and referral support to identified community members needing medical care;
- Peer support groups with mothers and caretakers on positive parenting;
- MHPSS art and recreational activities for youth.
An upsurge in fighting between the Myanmar Armed Forces and Ethnic Armed Organizations since December 2018 has caused civilian casualties and the displacement of tens of thousands of people across Rakhine. Many of these affected communities still live in displacement across nine townships of Rakhine State. As such IOM seeks to support those IDPs living in displacement with access to WASH services. Activities will include:
- Hygiene and community mobilisation to promote safe hygiene;
- Promoting health-seeking behaviours, and empowering displaced people to take an active role in WASH maintenance;
- Improving community level WASH infrastructure and access to clean water;
- Improving overall access to safe hygiene facilities for communities.
Government counterparts, humanitarian actors, and communities in disaster-prone areas.
IOM is seeking to improve the readiness of the government and communities in disaster-prone areas to prepare and respond to natural disasters. Aligned with the Sendai Framework priorities, IOM’s disaster risk reduction (DRR) programming works will aim to prevent or reduce displacement associated with disaster and climate risk, and strengthen resilience by incorporating “build-back-better” measures in recovery. Planned activities may include multi-hazard risk assessments, community-based disaster risk management, early warning systems, government capacity-building, risk-informed policies and strategies, risk information systems, environmental protection measures, planned relocation, training and livelihood diversification. In addition, IOM will support the Department of Disaster Management, along with the General Administration Department, to develop township level multi-hazard risk maps and Disaster Management Plans. Those maps and plans will be vital in assisting decision-makers to plan development and infrastructure initiatives. Building on this, IOM will improve end-to-end early warning systems, coastal protection and build community resilience. Activities will include:
- Supporting the development of the Myanmar Disaster Risk Mapping Guidelines;
- Supporting the Government and communities in local disaster risk mapping and prevention planning.
In order to strengthen the emergency preparedness of government counterparts, humanitarian actors, and communities, IOM will carry out the following activities:
- Support the development of State and Township level policy documents addressing preparedness and responses to natural disasters;
- Support the capacity development of government staff;
- Support the capacity development of local NGOs and CSOs;
- Mainstream community-based disaster risk reduction and management into community stabilization and development programming;
- Raise awareness among communities and the government on disaster risk issues.
Figures are as of 31 December 2020. For more details of IOM's operational capacity in country, please see the IOM Capacity section.