IOM’s Community Stabilization (CS) programme has supported local communities in Libya since 2016, addressing drivers of instability and vulnerability, and contributing to the restoration of normal social and economic life for Libyan communities and migrants. Across Libya, protracted conflict, weak security and poor service delivery has undermined community cohesion and resilience.

The displacement of Libyans and the presence of migrants has compounded political, social and economic challenges facing local communities. Ongoing conflict, competition over resources and the pull factors of the illegal economy have proven conducive to increased irregular migration activities, further heightening community-level discord. Under the pressure of this instability, pre-existing tensions between people divided by tribe, race and ethnicity have become increasingly challenging, making the tasks of local governance and fair allocation of government resources ever more difficult. 

Using a community-led approach, the Community Stabilization programme works to create critical opportunities for constructive interaction among these divided and competing groups, building trust and strengthening bonds. IOM achieves this by employing a proven participatory methodology that brings together local communities, tribal and community leaders and civil society organizations (CSOs) from diverse backgrounds to identify and prioritize targeted interventions that respond to community needs, including infrastructure projects and the provision of equipment to improve basic services. 

The objective of this approach is to restore services and community infrastructure, promote social cohesion and support the regeneration of livelihoods. The programme has three pillars: 

  • Support for provision of basic services 
  • Promote and facilitate community engagement and social cohesion 
  • Regenerate and ensure livelihood opportunities to vulnerable communities 

The transition from humanitarian response to development in Libya is supported by interventions that directly engage host communities, internally displaced persons and migrants in Sabha, Qatroun, Al Kufra, and Benghazi; four geographic areas heavily affected by violence and mass migration. This holistic stabilization approach takes into account local and national dynamics of conflict and migration, as well as the need to include marginalized groups at every step in the stabilization process.