The impacts of displacement crises can be complex and catastrophic on the lives of affected populations, dislocating populations from their homes, livelihoods and communities.
They include the physical, visible impacts such as damage to housing and public infrastructure, injury and death.
They also include the less visible impacts or factors that might, in some instances, have led to their displacement in the first place, such as inter- or intra- communal tensions over scarce resources, marginalization of different social or ethnic groups.
Transitioning out of the immediate, emergency phase of displacement crises, whilst positive, in most cases reveals deeper, more complex and lasting impacts on the stability of affected areas. Displacement crises can weaken or eradicate the social, physical, political, cultural, economic, judicial and security structures and systems required for societies and communities to function.
If left unaddressed, multi-dimensional instability can result in the emergence or re-emergence of violence, humanitarian crises and displacement, as well as preventing the achievement of durable solutions.
IOM’s community stabilization approach comprises locally driven, development-principled programming in crises or transitional or fragile contexts. This programming aims to prevent, mitigate and reduce the drivers and negative effects of displacement, irregular and return migration.
IOM works with governments, stakeholders and individuals to promote stability at the local level as a step out of crisis or fragility, paving the way for more sustainable development approaches.
The community stabilization approach combines addressing multi-sectoral early recovery needs with a specific focus on addressing the factors that destabilize communities, restoring horizontal cohesion across communities and vertical social contracts with local leadership, for which both flexibility and an in-depth understanding of local contexts are essential.
Interventions include, inter alia, community-based planning and recovery; local-level reconciliation; quick impact livelihood restoration; inclusive access to basic services; strengthening the capacities of local authorities; and strengthening social cohesion through sports, arts, culture and strategic communication.