Mercy Corps, with support from the EU, empower Bama with houses, transformers, boreholes, and skills center

Ceremonial gathering of Emirate chiefs to usher in the Shehu of Bama.

In a turnaround event recently celebrated during a colorful cultural festival, Bama community in Borno State severely impacted by the insurgency in the Northeast is receiving significant support from international humanitarian organization Mercy Corps and partners to assist the recovery and return of indigenes.

Over the past two years, Mercy Corps working in close collaboration with the European Union, and the Borno State government has provided support for critical projects, which are making a difference in Bama.

The projects, completed and ongoing, include the construction of 325 permanent shelters equipped with solar power for IDPs, and returnee families, rehabilitation and equipping of a multi skills training center (MSTRC) and training of over 1,200 youths in different livelihood skills using artisans trained by skilled specialists.


Notable impactful projects implemented under the EU funded intervention include the distribution of food to 5,000 households in Bama for six months and another in three tranches for 2,000 households. The cultural festival supported by Mercy Corps marks the first time in over 10 years Bama is able to host such an event, which was preceded the next day by the coronation of five chieftaincy titles to prominent sons of Bama among which was the highest and second in command to the Shehu.

Country Director of Mercy Corps Nigeria, Ndubisi Anyanwu, described the projects and the event as outcomes of the organization’s commitment to building resilience in communities affected by the insurgency.

He said, “Mercy Corps is here to celebrate cultural diversity with the people of Bama. Since 2012, Mercy Corps has been in Nigeria and particularly in the Northeast to bring life-saving interventions to the most vulnerable people in the hardest to reach places in Nigeria. Our sense of fulfillment is being able to record measurable impact from our interventions like we are seeing in Bama.”

The Shehu of Bama, His Royal Highness, Alhaji Umar Kyari Umar, commended Mercy Corps and partners for the longstanding efforts to support the community with key development projects. “I thank the Mercy Corps family for what you have been doing. On behalf of the good people of Bama Emirate, I sincerely appreciate your good work,” he said.

The Education Secretary of Bama Local Government Area, Zanna Maina Yakubu, was also effusive in his description of the significance and impact of the projects. “The good people of Bama emirate are so proud to have Mercy Corps around supporting early recovery efforts of Borno state government and forever Mercy Corps shall be remembered in Bama’s book of history for supporting the revival of Bama culture and alleviating sufferings of thousands of people,” he added.

Dignitaries at the event included the Director of Programs, Mercy Corps Nigeria, Margaret McLoughlin; Member Borno state House of Assembly representing Bama (Gulumba-Woloji), Hon Baba Shehu Gulumba, Commissioner Information, Home Affairs and Culture, Hon. Babakura Abba Jato. Also at the event was the Former Chairman Federal Character Commission, Dr. Shettima Bukar Mustapha; Former Managing Director Operations NNPC, Alhaji Ibrahim Abba; Board Member, North East Development Commission, Alhaji Chiroma Abba Kaka and Bama Local Government Council Chairman, Hon. Abba Kolo Kachalla.

A group of program officials and regional representatives posing together.
L-R: Bulama Mustapha – Mercy Corps Nigeria MAIDA Program Assistant, Bala Joseph – Mercy Corps Nigeria Field Manager Bama Office, Ndubisi Anyanwu – Mercy Corps Nigeria Country Director, HRH Umar Ibn kyari Umar - Elkanemi Shehu of Bama, Margaret McLoughlin - Mercy Corps Nigeria Director of Programs, Hon. Babakura Abba - Jato Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism.

About the EU MAIDA Program

Mercy Corps Nigeria, with funding by the European Union, is implementing the Maida program to support the early recovery of about 200,000 returnees, internally displaced persons and members of host communities affected by the violent insurgency in Borno State. Implemented in partnership with the International Centre for Energy, Environment & Development (ICEED), the program is implemented in accordance with the EU’s objective to build the resilience of conflict-affected people and communities in Borno in an environment-friendly way.

Maida also works with youth and adolescents to create opportunities for employment, giving them vocational training and helping them to diversify their income. The program also improves rural livelihoods through the provision of grants/input vouchers, establishing Village Saving Loans Associations (VSLAs), mobilizing and rehabilitating agriculture and livestock cooperatives and linking them to financial services.  Maida also works to increase access to protection services for vulnerable populations and building social cohesion for conflict-affected communities. The program supports vulnerable households by disbursing cash transfers, providing energy efficient shelter, and promoting nutritional and hygiene knowledge. In partnership with ICEED, we provide fuel-efficient wood stoves which reduces time spent seeking firewood by women and girls.

Stay connected to our work.