||Local governance, institutional resilience, economic resilience, capacity development, service delivery
||Peter van de Pol
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The Strengthening Institutional and Economic Resilience in Yemen (SIERY) project has been designed to buttress the resilience of local governance systems in Yemen to reinforce the resilience and recovery of conflict-affected communities. The project is based on the assessment that in a context of protracted conflict and massive population movements across the country (disproportionately affecting women, children and youth), that the resilience of local populations cannot depend solely upon self-help or on foreign aid. It is also necessary that local authorities are able to more effectively fulfil their mission in terms of: (a) core functions, (b) basic service delivery, (c) emerging needs such as conflict resolution, humanitarian aid, disaster management, internally displaced people and (d) economic recovery.
Despite a precarious situation, local authorities in Yemen have proven remarkably resilient in the face of the prolonged effects of the conflict. Further deterioration will have serious implications for the sustainability of aid and recovery and the viability of any future political settlement and transition. And the growing local governance system gaps in capacities, resources, and outcomes across the country create severe institutional and economic resilience instabilities that threaten to perpetuate the conflict.
UNDP has created a structured and systematic project for local authorities to help maintain, enhance, and expand performance. The project aims to ensure economic and social wellbeing for Yemenis, in particular for the poorest and most vulnerable. SIERY responds to crucial development challenges of YemenStress that UNDP is very keen to build on the existing partnership with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and to work closely to achieve stability, peace and development in Yemen and the region. Express UNDP’s commitment to supporting a response to the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, but simultaneouly supporting the implementation of the HDP Nexus by strengthening institutional capacity and economic stability at the local level, supporting small businesses and improving access to economic opportunities for women.
- Strengthened local authority capacities to respond to community needs for services in an inclusive and accountable manner.
- Improved capacities of public services providers for scaling-up the outreach to the most vulnerable.
- Strengthened central, local and horizontal relations between local governance stakeholder.
- Strengthened linkages/cooperation opportunities between micro, small and medium enterprises, private sector and micro-finance microfinance institutions involved in the value chains.
- Increased and de-risked access to financial services for economic agents in promising value chains.
- 36 sites in 18 districts have been identified for education infrastructure rehabilitation, with an emphasis on girls’ facilities – this support aims to improve access to education for over 40,000 students.
- Over 40 locally-prioritised projects identified for implementation by the end of 2021, including rehabilitation of roads, health facilities, local authority infrastructure, as well as procurement and installation of solar energy equipment.
- Seven value chain sectors identified to recieve support, in collaboration between the private sector and local authorities in Hadhramaut and Aden.
- Ten market infrastructures have been identified for rehabilitation in Hadhramaut and Aden.
The decisions on which sectors the SIERY projects should prioritise were taken together by local authorities, private sector representatives, and women representatives to ensure women's business needs were equally considered and understood. Over 65 women from civil and business entities participated in this process and five sectors were selected that will particularly benefit women and youth.
As a direct result of the dedicated workshop for women, the businesswomen in Seiyun established a businesswomen union for better representation and a voice to influence policies and decisions by local goverment.