More than two years of drought in the Horn of Africa has led to the death of over 2.5 million livestock and an acute food crisis affecting 4.4 million people in Kenya. In rural areas, uncertainty and insecurity are particularly high. This is why Caritas Germany asked BICC to conduct a pilot study on food insecurity and violent conflict in Marsabit County, Kenya.
The goal of our study was twofold: To understand the diverse needs of local communities and to gauge the potential for humanitarian and peacebuilding support to meet these needs and positively transform local conflicts. In November 2022, with the support of Caritas Marsabit and PACIDA, we conducted field research in the Marsabit sub-counties of Saku, North Horr and Laisamis. We combined this with desk research of literature and data on conflict events in the area for a mixed methods approach.
Our findings are summarised in a BICC report published in May 2023 on the interrelations between food insecurity and violent conflict in Marsabit, Kenya, with recommendations for policymakers and humanitarian, development, and peace practitioners on how to address these links along the humanitarian–development–peace (HDP) nexus. The recommendations are the result of a workshop organised by Caritas in Marsabit town with Kenyan and international stakeholders. The findings of our report were also discussed at events with Caritas Germany, including with members of the German Bundestag in Berlin. In addition, Caritas Germany published a joint publication (Peace came from the herders) summarising the findings and the recommendations for policymakers in August 2023.