Improving the living conditions of refugees and host communities in eastern Sudan

Project description

Title: Vocational education and training and food security for refugees and host communities in eastern Sudan (Kassala and Gedaref)
Commissioned by: Bundesministerium für wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit und Entwicklung (BMZ)
Country: Sudan
Gesamtlaufzeit: 2016 to 2019


Eastern Sudan has recently emerged from conflict and is one of the country’s poorest and least developed regions. Here, the natural resources needed for agriculture – especially water – are in short supply, and there is a lack of training opportunities in the trades and small business. Consequently, very few people have the skills they need to gain access to the labour market and improve their living conditions. The future therefore looks bleak for many people living in this region. Furthermore, the economic causes of the decade-long armed conflict in the region were only partly addressed by the 2006 Eastern Sudan Peace Agreement, so the peace remains fragile.

Sudan is a transit, target and home country for migrants and refugees, with 367,000 officially registered refugees in September 2016. There are also many asylum seekers whose refugee status has not been recognised. Most live in the states of Kassala and Gedaref in eastern Sudan. The social and economic integration of refugees is inadequate in this region, and their presence in large numbers puts further pressure on natural resources and access to training. Neither the refugees nor the host communities are therefore able to improve their living conditions.


The living conditions of host communities and refugees in the states of Kassala and Gedaref are improved.


With GIZ’s support, two training colleges in Gedaref and Kassala are providing young people with labour market-oriented vocational education in the trades, services and small business, thereby harnessing local communities’ and refugees’ employment potential. In addition, with support from the project, local small businesses are encouraged to create and maintain training places and jobs for college graduates, thus facilitating their transition into work or self-employment. In this way, the project also contributes to private sector development.

In parallel, the project provides support for the agricultural sector, thus enhancing food security. In this region, farming is rain-fed, so the project advises selected communities on water resources management and supports the construction of rainwater harvesting systems in order to increase productivity. The project also focuses to a limited extent on measures to improve the drinking water supply for refugees and host communities.
This trilateral project is implemented under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD).