On January 25, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) successfully concluded the two-year conflict mitigation activity ‘Building Community Resilience to Violent Extremism and Conflict in Northeast Nigeria’, also known as Northeast Connection, that worked to counter violent conflict.
Since 2021, Northeast Connection promoted nonviolent conflict resolution from the grassroots to state government levels in Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe states. The activity provided over $2.1 million in small grants to almost 40 local organizations to strengthen local civil society capacity and promote local solutions to violence.
“USAID is committed to enduring partnerships with Nigerian government institutions and civil societies to mitigate violent conflict in the country,” said Mukhtari Shitu, Conflict Specialist USAID/Nigeria at the closeout event.
Implemented by Creative Associates, the USAID-supported $10.1 million activity worked in 90 communities across 15 local government areas (LGAs) in the three states. Northeast Connection established 181 peace platforms that supported community organizers to identify and advocate for social priorities; trained more than 22,000 people in conflict mitigation and cross-community dialogues; and provided trauma-informed psychosocial support to more than 4,300 community members.
In Yobe State, the activity worked with the emergency management agency to launch the first-ever two-year Early Recovery Plan which equipped the agency with the ability to respond to and recover from disasters more effectively.
Violent conflict has devastated social and governance structures and local markets in Northeast Nigeria. The ongoing insurgency by violent extremist groups such as Boko Haram and ISIS West Africa has killed over 35,000 and displaced 2.2 million people. The region also struggles with regular intercommunal clashes between farmers, herders, and other groups over land and water resources.
The Northeast connection activity is part of USAID’s strategic effort to decrease conflict and instability and promote stability and early recovery in Nigeria.