After several years of civil conflict, Libya continues to experience political instability, conflict, economic crisis and insecurity. Political and military rivalry between factions persists and is exacerbated by the presence of hundreds of militias with varying allegiances, leading to sporadic eruptions of violence. Recent attacks have been claimed by the Islamic State group, which may signal the group’s re-emergence in Libya.
Since early April 2019 the Eastern government and the Libyan National Army (LNA) have commenced an operation to “take” Tripoli, which has resulted in significant displacement, uncertainty and insecurity.
Against this backdrop, an estimated 823,000 individuals need humanitarian assistance. The IOM estimates that there are over 300,000 Libyans internally displaced as result of the escalation. Those who have returned to their areas of origin are returning to severely damaged homes and communities unable to provide protection or basic services. An additional 13,925 families in Tripoli have been displaced from their homes since the start of the recent armed conflict in April 2019.
NRC began operations in Libya in 2017 and has continued to scale up its operational and programming presence supporting Libyan IDPs, returnees and host communities as well as vulnerable non-Libyan communities.
NRC implements education, shelter, ICLA and WASH activities in Tripoli and Benghazi. It is the co-lead of the National Education and Shelter Working Sector Working Groups, and is also a member of the Libya INGO Forum. NRC has established offices and guesthouses in Tripoli and Benghazi.
NRC’s education response ensures that children and young people have access to quality, safe and inclusive education. The education environment in Libya requires emergency/transitional and resilience/sustainable support. NRC responds to both through its established learning centres and in government schools.
NRC also works with communities to provide community-based education services, and provides training and support to volunteer teachers. Key activities supported by the NRC Libya education teams include:
- Better Learning Programme (BLP)
- School rehabilitation/upgrades
- Teacher professional development
- Arabic Basic Literacy and Numeracy (BLN) non-formal education classes
- Non-formal catch-up classes for non-Libyan children and youth
- Adolescent girls clubs (AGCs)
- Parent-teacher associations (PTAs)
- Outreach and community awareness activities
- Sector coordination and capacity building
Information, counselling and legal assistance (ICLA)
NRC supports vulnerable displacement- and conflicted-affected communities to establish legal identity, including obtaining legal civil documentation (LCD), and claim their housing, land and property (HLP) rights. This is done through awareness raising on legal protection needs by providing information at the community level. Through mobile group information sessions (GIS), NRC raises awareness on LCD and HLP rights, procedural requirements and how to exercise them.
Furthermore, NRC provides populations of concern with direct legal assistance and representation before formal courts, administrative bodies, or through collaborative dispute resolution mechanisms. Finally, NRC provides technical assistance and capacity building to duty-bearers, customary justice actors and displaced community leaders on property rights, protection against eviction, property restitution and compensation.
Over the next year, NRC will also provide HLP support to NRC shelter teams and the shelter sector at large by conducting HLP due diligence for shelter beneficiaries and training NRC shelter teams in HLP and security of tenure issues. This will help ensure that mitigation measures are in place for not doing harm, including reducing the risk of eviction and increasing beneficiary protection against exclusion from compensation schemes. NRC is now the main focal point in Tripoli and Benghazi for IDP, host community, or returnee people in need of legal aid.
Shelter and settlements
NRC Libya’s shelter strategy focuses on ensuring dignified living conditions for displacement- and conflicted-affected communities in urban settings and informal settlements. This is achieved through the rehabilitation of damaged houses in urban settings and the improvement of the shelter and WASH conditions of vulnerable IDPs living in informal settlements.
Shelter is essential for people to live safely and securely, while a lack of adequate shelter in many areas features among the key obstacles to sustainable return across Libya. Currently NRC provides shelter solutions to conflicted-affected communities in Benghazi.
NRC provides shelter assistance to conflict-affected populations including returnees, IDPs and other vulnerable groups in urban settings. NRC targets the most vulnerable people in under-served areas.
As proof of ownership is an essential element of the rehabilitation and upgrade modalities, NRC ICLA and shelter teams operate in the same areas to maximise the impact of this programme and in line with NRC’s commitment to integrated programming. NRC assistance to beneficiaries with security of tenure complements the work carried out by NRC ICLA teams regarding access to civil documentation.
NRC also supports informal settlements where vulnerable families are supported with shelter repairs and improvements, and larger informal settlements are supported with garbage removal, garbage bins distribution and communal lighting systems. NRC also advocates for improved shelter accessibility for people with special needs.
- Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (NMFA)
- Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA)
- United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR)
- Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO)
- United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)