THE Salvation Army in Mali is setting up programmes to assist people affected by ongoing conflicts. Following a coup in 2012, rebel groups effectively took control of the northern provinces of the country, driving many people to the south and to neighbouring countries. In January 2013 France and some African nations deployed troops in an attempt to liberate the northern provinces from rebel control. While this has been achieved to some extent, fighting continues in the north.
As a result of the conflict and ongoing fears for safety, approximately 475,000 people are still away from their homes. Around 300,000 are internally displaced, with the rest living as refugees in neighbouring countries including Burkina Faso and Senegal.
At the request of The Salvation Army’s Mali Region, a team has been deployed by The Salvation Army’s International Emergency Services to assist internally displaced people. Working from within the United Nations’ coordination clusters, plans are well underway to provide such assistance.
The team has engaged with local Salvationists to work in three communities around the capital, Bamako. A training scheme to help generate income for displaced people through soap manufacturing should commence within the next two weeks.
There are also plans to assist 200 families with non-food material assistance that will help them as they live in temporary accommodation. The families that will receive this assistance are among the most vulnerable, as identified by the International Organization for Migration.
Report by International Emergency Services