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HI started activities in Somaliland in 1992 by setting up a rehabilitation centre in Hargeisa. HI’s strategy in Somaliland is to advocate for the rights of persons with disabilities and to engage development actors in promoting inclusion and participation of people with disabilities at local and national levels.

HI Somaliland

Humanity & Inclusion Somaliland | © C. Smets-Luna / HI

Our actions

In 2017 when severe droughts occurred, HI was present with reduced activities in Hargeisa for an inclusive elections project. The worsening situation called for an adapted response. HI decided to respond to the crisis along two axes: inclusion mainstreaming for NGOs working on the humanitarian response, and stimulative therapy for malnourished children.

HI is also implementing projects focusing on promoting inclusive humanitarian action. One of the projects focuses on protection, psychosocial emergency aid and referrals to lifesaving services for most at-risk, displaced and host populations. The project has invested in raising awareness around inclusive humanitarian action through protection, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), and climate change management clusters. The other project, in partnership with Danish Refugee Council (DRC), aims to reduce risks and save lives of crisis-affected households through inclusive and integrated community-based emergency response. HI supports DRC in ensuring inclusive actions, specifically working in three streams: monitoring and evaluation processes, WASH and protection sectors.

Areas of intervention

Latest stories

Somaliland drought threatens pastoral communities
© HI

Somaliland drought threatens pastoral communities

55-year old Amina comes from a long line of herders. Years of insufficient rainfall and climate change have put her work and family at risk, forcing them out of their home and way of life.

Somaliland elections: enforcing the right to vote for people with disabilities
© HI

Somaliland elections: enforcing the right to vote for people with disabilities

On 13 November, voters in Somaliland elected their new president. Over a period of more than two years, Handicap International (HI) encouraged people with disabilities to participate in the electoral system. This inclusive elections initiative was implemented in six of the country’s regions and benefited some 300,000 people with disabilities.  

African States against the use of explosive weapons in populated areas
© HI
Explosive weapons

African States against the use of explosive weapons in populated areas

From 27th to 28th November, Handicap International (HI) is organising a regional conference on the bombing of civilians. The Conference will take place in Maputo, Mozambique and aims to bring together some 20 States, 10 African civil society organisations and international NGOs. The goal is to raise awareness of this vital challenge among African countries and to encourage them to take action on the world stage to protect civilians from the devastating impact of the use of explosive weapons in populated areas.


Map of Humanity & Inclusion's interventions in Somaliland

Security risks and endemic inter-clan fighting for control of land, pasture or water sources, intensified during drought conditions, continue to lead to the displacement of civilians and heighten humanitarian needs.

Prolonged internal displacement in Somalia has also led to loss of social protection networks. Many have been displaced from their homes for decades, are marginalized and at risk of forced evictions, discrimination, pervasive exploitation and abuse. Female-headed households within internally displaced communities are particularly vulnerable and often have limited access to justice, services and assistance, including medical care and psychosocial support. Children are especially vulnerable to various forms of abuse, including practices like female genital mutilation, forced and early marriage, family separation, child labor and forced recruitment into armed groups.

It should be noted that Somaliland is more socially homogeneous than Somalia or indeed most other African states (and greater homogeneity tends to mean higher levels of trust between citizens).

Number of HI staff members: 73

Date the programme opened: 1992

Where we work