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At the start of 2021, Libya is at a cross-roads. Last year began in conflict, particularly around Tripoli, that killed, injured or displaced tens of thousands of people, by mid-year the fighting had ceased, which was formalized in October into a permanent ceasefire and reengagement in a political process. While previous attempts to resolve the conflict in Libya have been fleeting, 2021 offers a real possibility of peace and stability for Libyans. These initial steps now need to be translated into concrete actions to improve the lives of the most vulnerable people in the country. Libyan and non-Libyans still face significant hardships. The COVID-19 pandemic, as in many countries, continues to spread across the country, with a significant toll on the Libyan population and its fragile healthcare system. Frequent water and electricity cuts, shortages in health care workers, medical supplies and personal protective equipment has resulted in further closures to health facilities making it even more difficult to combat the virus, as well as provide basic health care services. The socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19, compounded by eight months of blocked oil production and a continuing economic crisis, has worsened people’s living conditions and coping capacities. Conflict and fragmented governance has led to a deterioration in the provision of basic services, further eroding people’s resilience. While the suspension of fighting has allowed many people to start returning to their homes, explosive hazard contamination is widespread, posing an obstacle to many who want to return and a risk to people’s lives and livelihoods until clearance can be undertaken. (HC forwards) 

In 2021, HRP partners aim to reach approximately 451,000 people, 36 per cent of the 1.3 million people identified to be in need of humanitarian assistance. These are people with the most severe needs as a result of a partial or total collapse of living standards and basic services, increased reliance on negative coping strategies, and widespread physical and mental harm. The response will target five groups identified as particularly vulnerable—internally displaced persons, non-displaced Libyans, returnees, and migrants and refugees— across all 22 mantikas in the country. Based on assessed needs, the response prioritizes provision of or access to critical services, such as education, health, protection, and hygiene and sanitation, as well as providing access to basic household goods and commodities including food and essential non-food items. The response will be underpinned by two strategic objectives that aim to prevent disease, reduce risks to physical and mental wellbeing, and strengthen the protection of civilians in accordance with international legal frameworks, as well as facilitate safe, equitable and dignified access to critical services and livelihoods to enhance people’s resilience and ensure they meet their basic needs. Response modalities will include in-kind assistance and service support, as well as conditional and unconditional cash assistance. (HRP Overview)

SNFI Sector Objectives

The Shelter and NFI (SNFI) Sector has two objectives that aim at improving the physical living conditions and promoting dignified and safe access to adequate and secure accommodation. Under the second HRP strategic objective, SNFI Sector partners will contribute to building the resilience of targeted populations by improving living conditions, as well as hygiene and health conditions, and protect against environmental factors and ensure greater safety and security. This will contribute towards increased resilience and social cohesion of communities and households by improving housing and related community/ public infrastructure. Reducing the household’s needs to spend money on shelter upgrades, or on rent, will significantly reduce financial burdens and enable targeted populations to better meet their basic needs and invest in more durable solutions.


Of the 374,000 people estimated to need of shelter and non-food items, SNFI Sector partners will target 111,000 people. This includes 30,000 displaced, 39,000 returnees, 10,000 non-displaced, 22,000 migrants and 10,000 refugees. Of the total, 41 per cent are women and girls. 

The SNFI Sector's priority remains to ensure adequate, appropriate and affordable housing options for the most vulnerable people. Activities include improving physical living conditions through support for upgrading and rehabilitating damaged and substandard housing, collective shelters and accommodation facilities. These activities will mainly target displaced families, returnees and migrants, focusing on areas that have been damaged by the conflict, such as southern Tripoli. This will ensure that these shelters meet a minimum standards and provide a higher quality of living conditions and better protection for those living in these spaces. Modalities used for upgrading and rehabilitating shelters will depend on the scale and nature of the works that are required. For minor works, SNFI Sector partners will provide shelter materials to allow vulnerable households and individuals to independently carry out repairs themselves. For rehabilitation works that require skilled laborers, partners will either complement the delivery of materials with technical capacity and guidance or will implement interventions through contractors to ensure quality and best practices are considered for the more technically challenging interventions. Improving community infrastructure and public buildings will also be included to promote better access to basic services such as health, education and power utilities. While most activities will be through in-kind assistance, cash assistance, mostly in the form of rental assistance, will be provided where feasible and appropriate. 

SNFI Sector partners will also provide core relief items, households items, as well as seasonal non-food items and shelter materials. This will mainly be provided through in-kind assistance for non-food items and core  relief items, as well as shelter materials intended for emergency upgrades


Shelter & NFI Sector 4W Dashboard

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December 2020



  • Insecurity and fighting triggered new displacement in the first six months of the year. At least 36,000 people were newly displaced from February to June due to escalation in armed conflict in western Libya.
  • In June significant changes to lines of control, with GNA-affiliated forces re-taking Tripoli, Tarhuna and nearby towns, saw displaced people slowly starting to return to their home areas. More than 18,000 people reportedly returned in July and August.
  • In 2020, nearly 376,000 people are estimated to need shelter and non-food items. This includes 58,000 displaced people, 82,000 returnees, 107,000 non-displaced Libyans, 82,000 migrants and 46,000 refugees. This is a 10 per cent increase in the number of people, compared to 2019, with the most significant increases among returnees. The most severe needs were found in Aljfara, Alkufra, Almarj, Benghazi, Misrata and Sirt, Tobruk and Tripoli. Shelter needs are particularly concentrated in the urban settlements in the east and west, where there is large destruction to houses and infrastructures due to conflict. Migrants and refugees were identified with the most severe shelter needs
  • Migrants and refugees continue to take risks in attempts to cross the Mediterranean to Europe. Although Libya is not a safe in 2020 11,265 individuals have been intercepted at sea and returned to ports of disembarkation, number of drowned and missing cases remain uncertain.
  • Those are most arbitrarily detained without due process in official detention centers, where widespread abuses have been documented. The number of migrants and refugees detained in official detention centers fluctuates, average between 2,200 and 3,100 people is reported, of these about 12 per cent are women and 27 per cent are children. These people are in immediate dire needs of protection and NFI assistance, while identification of durable solution remain crucial.


  • In 2020 SNFI partners have reached 145,207 individuals of which 85,490 under HRP (178% of target) in 21 Mantika with the distribution of core and essential NFI; 32,582 individuals of which 17,440 under HRP (70% of target) also received winterization kits and additional items. This figure, which represents the 303% against the target shows that the number of people in need has increased in 2020 exponentially, 73,460 ind. IDPs, and 71.747 migrants and refugees received NFI assistance.
  • Regarding the shelter activities 5000 not Libyans were provided with emergency shelter materials kits (20% HRP target); 1,123 ind. (56% HRP target) of which 92% not Libyans were assisted with rental support in the urban areas of Tripoli and Misrata. In 4 Mantika: Benghazi, Ejdabia, Tripoli, Aljfara, 1260 IPDs (48% HRP target) were supported with the rehabilitation of their damaged dwellings, and 593 IDPs individuals benefitted of the rehabilitation of public buildings, while 5234 IDPs of the repair of community infrastructures. The rehabilitation of collective centers in Tripoli, which supported 1294 individuals (36% HRP target) of which 84% IDPs, was carried on only till February due to their closure announced by the Government.


  • The indiscriminate use of heavy weaponry in civilian areas has resulted in severe damage to housing and civilian infrastructure, social services including hospitals and schools, across the country. In the last 12 months attacks on infrastructure, lack of maintenance, fuel and energy crisis in the country, resulted in disruptions to water and electricity have further eroded people’s living standards; access to basic hygiene and sanitation services remains a challenge.
  • A significant constraint to people returning to their homes is the presence of booby-traps, IEDs, landmines and explosive remnants of war. New contaminated areas, such as Tripoli’s southern neighborhoods, are reported in addition to areas of Benghazi and Sirt contaminated from years of fighting.
  • High displacement, along with significant damage to civilian infrastructure, particularly in urban areas, increased the demand for safe shelter spaces, adding pressure on their availability and affordability. As a result, rental prices have risen to levels that many poor and low-income families are unable to afford, putting them at increased risk of eviction. This risk is more significant for displaced families, migrants and refugees, minority groups as many do not have formal rental contracts.
  • The increased threats of eviction to IDP’s residing in collective shelters with very little capacity with the sector partners to provide access to accommodation.
  • The ability of many people to afford rent, as well as to cover other basic needs, has also been eroded by the impact of COVID-19. COVID-19 related movement restrictions and curfews, temporary closure of business have seen many people’s access to livelihoods negatively affected, mostly migrants and refugees, who are employed on daily labor, and women mostly engaged in the informal sector.
  • Decreased income is leading to the adoption of harmful coping strategies and result in aggravated protection risks. People’s coping capacities have been stretched resulting in an increased number of those living in sub-standard or crowded conditions, where is difficult to follow preventative protocols to reduce the spread of COVID19.
  • The liquidity issues and limitations in accessing cash for both populations of concern as well as humanitarian actors in Libya significantly restricts the modalities of intervention, not allowing more cash based programming
  • Discrimination in access to services and a lack of documentation continue to prevent migrants and refugees from meeting their basic needs including shelter and NFI, accessing services including specialized protection assistance.
  • Humanitarian access, which has been a consistent challenge in Libya since the start of the conflict, continues to be a major obstacle for humanitarian partners to reach those in need and for people in need to access the assistance. Bureaucratic impediments such as delays in issuing of visas, conflict-related constraints along with explosive hazard contamination cause movements restrictions. In 2020, access has been compounded by COVID-19 and associated measures imposed by various authorities in Libya, as well as the global impediments related to travel and supply chains


Coverage against targets

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Coordination Team