Establishment of the Somalia Inter-Agency Disability Inclusion Task Team


IASC-Guidelines Pilot Countries

On 18th January 2024 as part of Phase 3 – Leave no one behind! Project, HI’s Somalia project team presented the objectives to establish the Somalia Inter-Agency Technical Support Task Team (SIDITT) during the monthly meeting of the Disability Inclusion Working Group DIWG under the Protection Cluster in Mogadishu, Somalia.

The Disability Inclusion Working Group (DIWG) is a humanitarian forum and working group of protection cluster which comprises representatives of Clusters, Area of Responsibilities, the Inter-Cluster Coordination Group (ICCG), National Organization, International Non-Governmental Organizations, Organizations of Persons with Disabilities (OPDs), UN Agencies and government authorities. It was  established in 2023 with the technical support of Humanity & Inclusion (HI) to facilitate inter-sectoral and inter-agency coordination. The DIWG works toward improving cross-sectoral coordination on disability inclusion and promoting the four must-do actions (meaningful participation, remove barriers, empowerment and capacity building, data collection and monitoring) defined by the IASC Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action.

The DIWG recognised that humanitarian coordination bodies, including the Inter-Cluster Coordination Group, protection, food security, health, education and shelter sector actors, are requesting trainings and technical support on disability-inclusive humanitarian programming. While the DIWG has been able to respond to some of these requests with extensive support from HI, a more systematic approach would require a better resourced set-up. Hence, the DIWG Somalia highlighted the need to establish a localised technical support mechanism on disability-inclusive humanitarian action under the umbrella of DIWG with the name of Somalia Inter-Agency Disability Inclusion Task Team (SIDITT). It comprises members from national humanitarian coordination and humanitarian actors to provide technical support on mainstreaming disability. The main objective is to strengthen and localize technical resources to operationalize the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities.

Muhammad Jahangir, Inclusive Humanitarian Action Specialist of HI Somalia, presented the scope of the work of the Inter-Agency Technical Support Mechanism during the monthly meeting of DIWG Somalia on 18th January 2024. The SIDITT’s scope of work includes the provision of technical support to mainstream disability at their own organizations and in the whole cluster coordination system. It will provide input for humanitarian need and response processes to ensure disability inclusion, facilitate the adoption and review of needs assessment tools, monitoring tools and guidance at inter-agency level or organizational level aligned with IASC Guidelines and commonly used practices. It also facilitates the joint technical support or replies to external requests such as learning pathways towards disability-inclusive humanitarian programming, input or development of disability-inclusive sector specific briefs, FAQs, tip sheets, review of existing sectors specific guidelines to make them more disability-inclusive in the Somali context. It will also provide a platform for peer-to-peer learning, furthering and strengthen knowledge gained during previous trainings on disability-inclusive humanitarian action.

The SIDITT has the potential to further localise, coordinate and scale up the technical support provided to humanitarian actors. It also provides opportunities to discuss synergies with similar initiatives such as gender equality and accountability to affected populations (AAP) and/or expand the reach of the SIDITT to regional humanitarian hubs/sub-clusters in Somalia. The work of SIDITT will be coordinated through the secretariat of the Disability Inclusion Working Group DIWG Somalia.

As a next step, our project will build the capacity of SIDITT’s members to enhance their level of expertise and confidence to provide technical support on disability-inclusive humanitarian action aligned with IASC guidelines on inclusion and develop the annual work plan.

The Protection Cluster and chair of DIWG concluded:

“We strongly express our support for establishment of localized technical support mechanism in the form of an Inter-Agency Disability Inclusion Task Team within the Disability Inclusion Working Group which will contribute towards protection cluster’s goal in ensuring protection of vulnerable populations specifically persons with disabilities who often face unique challenges. We will be able to provide technical support on disability-inclusive humanitarian action to more humanitarian actors and foster a more targeted and effective approach to disability inclusion in humanitarian activities as well as tailor interventions to the specific context of Somalia, taking into account cultural nuances and local challenges related to disability inclusion”.  

Text by Muhammad Jahangir, HI Somalia