“We cannot talk about conflict prevention without recognizing the role of early warning and response. They are intertwined.”

This film documents the Country Risk and Vulnerability Assessments (CRVA) conducted across West Africa to measure communities’ resilience to conflict, humanitarian emergencies and other shocks. These CRVAs take a hyper local approach to data collection and assessment, which in turn better informs the Economic Community of West African States’ (ECOWAS) violence prevention and development initiatives.

As the film outlines, the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Reacting to Early Warning and Response Data (REWARD) project worked closely with ECOWAS to conduct human security risk and vulnerability assessments in all 15 West African countries. Using Geographic Information System (GIS), systems analysis, and quantitative methods for a baseline, as well as field research conducted at the national and local levels covering the region’s hot spots. The project interviewed government officials, security agents, traditional rulers, women leaders, youth and development actors to better understand the systems already in place that foster resilience.

Building on this foundation, REWARD then worked with ECOWAS and national actors for robust analysis and response planning across the region. REWARD also worked with ECOWAS on a suite of early warning and early response processes and planning tools, including the Joint Analysis and Response Planning (JARP) Compendium. This compendium of frameworks and manuals details a holistic and collaborative human security early warning and early response system.

USAID’s REWARD project supports ECOWAS in its use of innovative technology and application of best practices to detect and better respond to human security challenges across the region. REWARD was implemented by Creative Associates International and their partners, the Fund for Peace (FFP) and Karuna Center for Peacebuilding.

For questions related to the CRVAs and the film, please contact Alimou Diallo at [email protected] or Aliya Jalloh at [email protected].