The context we work in
Today IAS has established Country Offices in the following 10 African countries: South Sudan (1990 – by then Sudan), Uganda (1991), Kenya (1991), Somalia/Somaliland (1992), Ethiopia (1997), Djibouti (1998), Sudan (2002), Chad (2009), Tanzania (2009) and Niger (2014). See our Country Strategies for more specific details.
While each country is unique, there are a few common denominators for IAS presence in these countries. These factors are interlinked and overlap resulting in increasing vulnerability of the populations IAS aims to serve:
- Armed conflict and political instability; a majority of the countries where IAS operate experience armed conflict and political instability. Sudan, South Sudan and Somalia/Somaliland are examples of this where maintaining operations is critical yet highly challenging.
- Underdevelopment and poverty; the countries in the regions IAS is targeting are some of the world’s poorest countries. Niger and Chad, not only grappling with chronic humanitarian needs, are also for example ranked in the bottom of the Human Development Index.
- Drought and other climate change related issues; the effects of climate change can be felt across the regions where IAS operates and is disproportionally affecting the already most vulnerable of the populations. Recurring drought and floods in Ethiopia, Djibouti, Kenya and Somaliland/Somalia are examples where this is of particular concern.
IAS added value to date
IAS has been managed to be present and stay relevant in these challenging contexts during the last 25 years. It is believed that the following value propositions (as obtained from our business model) have contributed to this success. Going forward it will be crucial to continue building on those added values and expand them further:
- Christian faith values in action;
- We invest in people and treat them equally;
- We’ mentality (not us/them);
- Low staff turnover;
- In-country presence with local expertise and knowledge and with solid relationships established with host governments, non-state actors, civil society and other relevant stakeholders on ground;
- We reach further (going to the unreached and hard to reach areas);
- We have access and we dig deeper,
- We have developed core competencies and positive track records in a number of disciplines; primarily in the sectors of WASH, Inclusive Education and Civil Society Development;
- As a multi-mandated organization we see the value of and strive to be relevant in the whole development spectrum – ranging from emergency relief to sustainable development;
- We drive change, we are highly motivate and we provide quality aid (incl adherence to international standards and principles).