Media Contact: Katherine Kolios, Katherine@rain4sahara.org
September 6, 2022— Rain for the Sahel and Sahara (RAIN) and Pathfinder International are delighted to partner to support women and girls in the Agadez region of Niger who are impacted by climate-driven migration.
The project, “Increasing Resilience in the Agadez Region,” beginning in September 2022, will work directly with local women’s groups and leaders to identify climate-adaptive solutions that improve the health, well-being, and economic resiliency of women and girls. The solutions will focus on:
- Trainings and resources that allow women to earn an income through sustainable agricultural and livestock husbandry techniques, including use of drought-resistant seeds adapted to the Sahelian climate.
- Local access to funds and regional women’s networks that support women to expand and diversify income streams.
- Community-based access to sexual and reproductive health services, including prevention and treatment for gender-based violence, a major threat to women, particularly those who are migrating.
“Women migrating through Agadez face numerous threats,” said Dr. Sani Aliou, Pathfinder’s Country Director in Niger. “Our partnership with RAIN, an organization with deep community roots and knowledge of the local context, will allow us to join our experiences working to advance sexual and reproductive health in Tillaberi, Zinder, and Tahoua with RAIN’s rich expertise in furthering women’s entrepreneurship in Agadez.”
The Agadez region is in the Sahel, where temperatures are warming one-and-a-half times faster than the global average, and climate-induced desertification is causing people to migrate in search of food, water, and work. Agadez is a regional hub for migrants going to Algeria, Libya, and Europe, but without access to sexual and reproductive health care, women are left vulnerable to gender-based violence, sexually transmitted diseases, and unintended pregnancies. Supporting local access to care, as well as food, water, and work, enables women and their communities to be more resilient in the face of growing threats and provides a stronger foundation for those forced to migrate.
“The search for water and food is a major concern for women, as the chore of fetching water wastes women’s time and strength,” said Azara Touma Touma Ibrahim, Director of RAIN’s Agadez Learning Center. “Local availability allows women to be more effective in development and keeps young girls in school. This will result in large numbers of educated women who will boost local and national development in our country.”
This program is one of many RAIN leads in Niger to support rural and nomadic people in Niger. In addition to Niger, Pathfinder leads women-led climate resilience programs in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Tanzania.
Rain for the Sahel and Sahara forges partnerships with rural and nomadic peoples in Niger to enable enduring and relevant livelihoods through access to education and opportunity.
Pathfinder works with local partners to advance sexual and reproductive health and rights around the world—including those affected by poverty, conflict, climate change, and natural disasters. Taken together, Pathfinder’s programs enable millions of people to choose their own paths forward.