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The CEWARN Rapid Response Fund (RRF)

The Rapid Response Fund (RRF) was set up in 2009 as a multi-donor basket fund to provide the CEWARN Mechanism with the flexibility and the rapid response capacity to mitigate violent conflicts in the IGAD region. Through the RRF, CEWARN is able to provide regular support to Conflict Prevention, Management and resolution (CPMR) initiatives of Member States and civil society actors that principally emanate from the community-level.

Operational Principles

  • Member State ownership
  • Inclusiveness
  • Decentralization
  • Bottom-up logic
  • Flexibility/specificity
  • Efficiency

From 2002 – 2012, RRF’s institutional structure and mode of operation were geared towards addressing cross-border pastoral conflicts in specific CEWARN areas of operation in the IGAD region.

It is currently undergoing a review to match the significant expansion of CEWARN’s thematic focus – i.e the types, causes and drivers of violent conflicts far beyond pastoral conflicts as well as a geographic expansion of area of operations – in line with the CEWARN Strategy framework 2012 – 2019.

Areas of Operation From 2002 - 2012

Ordinarily, the life span of RRF projects will not exceed one year as these projects are intended to complement long-term development interventions of governments rather than supplanting them.

The RRF may be called up on to prevent, de-escalate or resolve violent conflicts. Its scope covers two main types of intervention

  • Support to Conflict prevention, Management and resolution (CPMR) projects initiated at the local level. These include Peace dialogues; emergency support to communities affected by conflict; facilitating joint access to resources as well as technical studies and applied research.
  • Capacity building for peace structures at local, sub-national and national levels.

Institutional Setup

RRF’s institutional set up comprises a regional Steering Committee which is the highest decision making body of the facility. The steering committee meets regularly to review RRF Project proposals for funding. The Steering Committee has thirteen voting members, which are Heads of national Conflict Early Warning and response Units (CEWERUs) from each member state; four representatives of civil society organizations; CEWARN Director and a representative of IGAD Peace and Security Division. representatives of development partners also participate as non-voting members.

At the national and local levels, RRF Operations are overseen by CEWARN’s structures: the national CEWERU and local Peace Committees respectively.

Two Types of Funding

Rapid Response Fund project proposals for CPMR projects are initiated at the local level and are packaged into project proposals by local Peace Committees ( who are CEWARNs’ local level hubs). The proposal will be channeled to the national CEWERU for further refinement and endorsement before being submitted to the CEWARN unit and subsequently to the RRF Steering Committee. The RFF Steering Committee will review proposals taking into account a technical appraisal by the CEWARN rapid response Coordinator who is responsible for coordinating RFF Operations.

Capacity building projects on the other hand can be initiated by national CEWERUs or CEWARN unit.

All projects except urgent projects worth up to 10,000 USD have to go through a review and approval process of the rrf Steering Committee. review and decision for funding of urgent projects is done by the CEWARN unit Director and concerned Head of national CEWERU.

For more details on proposal formats, project criteria, approval procedures, reporting and Monitoring & Evaluation of RRF projects, refer to the CEWARN RRF Handbooks.


  • RRF interventions have been credited with significant reduction in level of violence in Karamoja, Somali and Dikihil clusters
  • RRF supports home-grown solutions to conflict and beefs up the capacity of local institutions to effectively respond to crises. This is in line with current trends in global Conflict Prevention, Management and resolution (CPMR) efforts that emphasize that violent conflicts are most effectively solved at the closest point to where they are occurring
  • RRF interventions have been credited with promoting peaceful co-existence resource sharing as well as free mobility of neighboring communities along IGAD Member States’ borders
  • In the years between 2009-2016, CEWARN through the rapid response fund (rrf) has supported 38 CPMr projects and 16 capacity building projects across Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan and Uganda

You can download the RRF brochure

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