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Camp Advisors meet through innovative project in Iraq

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Camp Advisors meet through innovative project in Iraq

The ‘Camp Advisors Club’, an innovative project set up by the CCCM Cluster in Sulaymaniyah and Youth Activity Organization (YAO), allows Camp Advisors to meet with colleagues and exchange ideas, challenges and best practices, based on the chapters of the Camp Management Toolkit.

The CCCM Cluster in Garmian (Sulaymaniyah Governorate, Kurdistan Region of Iraq) in partnership with UNHCR and Youth Activity Organization (YAO), has established the “Camp Advisors Club”, a weekly meeting between the Camp Advisors of the four camps Qoratu, Tazade, Alwand 1 and 2, which aims at examining and refreshing knowledge on the Camp Management Toolkit, one chapter at a time.

“The reason behind starting the Camp Advisors Club was to make sure the Camp Advisors would refresh the chapters of the Camp Management toolkit and have more means to make decisions and support the camp management teams in-camp, through mentoring and on-the-job trainings. The discussion with the other camp advisors would develop an "external" view of their work in the camps, as well as help seek creative solutions and activities”, says Marco Rotunno, UNHCR CCCM Advisor in Sulaymaniyah.

Every week, a different chapter of the Camp Management Toolkit is selected, based on current needs on the ground. The UNHCR CCCM Advisor sends key messages and materials to the Club members, along with some questions that each of them should answer prior to the Club meeting. The topics discussed so far are: roles and responsibilities; community participation; protection in camps; livelihoods; and safety and security.

The last Club meeting of October 17, on livelihoods, looked at the possibility of having shops in the camps (including the procedure on opening a shop in each camp), proposed livelihood activities for the camp residents, and promotion and encouragement of reliance and recovery. Challenges such as quality control of food, poor income generating activities and poor funding for livelihood projects were also discussed.

“Camp Advisors suggested various medium and long-term solutions, such as targeting the most vulnerable families, encouraging camp residents to implement self-run activities such as in the fishing industry (Alwand 1, Alwand 2 and Tazade camps are close to the rivers Alwand and Sirwan), and trading activities in Qoratu camp as it is near to the main road”, says Marco Rotunno.

The Camp Advisors are in charge of mentoring and capacity building of the camp management teams in camps. Both the Camp Advisors and the camp management teams are recruited by YAO, a CCCM partner in the Kalar/Khanaqin area. Thanks to this Club they can share ideas and best practices with colleagues working in other camps, discuss useful tools and procedures related to camp management, and propose solutions and creative ideas on activities in their camps.

The next steps for the project are to define standard procedures on how to follow up on the outcomes of the Club meetings, a process that will be supported by the CCCM Cluster.

For more information on the Camp Management Toolkit, please visit

For more information on this project, please contact Marco Rotunno at rotunno[at]unhcr[dot]org