Livelihood Security Restoration
Following political unrest in their home country, approximately 45,000 refugees from the Central African Republic (CAR) have settled in Cameroon. This sudden increase in population has put a great strain on food supplies and health care systems that were already overtaxed trying to meet local needs. IRD is contributing to an improved food security situation by training the refugees in biointensive farming, which will provide year-round access to nutritious food, recover livestock, and improve potable water systems.
IRD began the Livelihood Security Restoration for CAR Refugees and the Host Communities in Eastern Cameroon in May 2008. The year-long program is funded by the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration. IRD will assist nearly 37,000 refugees in 30 settlements in the Kadei, Lom, and Djerem areas of the Eastern Province of Cameroon, as well as almost 6,500 Cameroonians.
IRD will conduct two vaccination campaigns to protect livestock, training para-veterinarians to monitor animal health, and providing vulnerable households with small animals such as sheep or goats. Due to the limitations on land availability, IRD will provide hands-on training in biointensive gardening and soil fertility management as well as provide improved tools and seeds to maximize food supply. In addition, IRD will build and rehabilitate water infrastructures for both human consumption and irrigation.
IRD and a local partner, SODELCO, provide training to nomadic herdsmen in livestock health and nutrition. IRD has also helped develop a marketing strategy and provided technical support for the establishment of a noodle processing plant that will soon produce fortified noodles in Douala.