1. Background
  2. Peacebuilding

Support the Complex Crises Fund

Rapid Response Funding to Prevent Violent Conflict

By Ben Rowles, July 17, 2019


The Complex Crises Fund (CCF) enables the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to prevent and respond to emerging or unforeseen crises and conflicts.

A map of Africa, Europe, and Asia, with several countries highlighted in blue. Text: CCF HAS BEEN USED TO HELP PREVENT AND REDUCE VIOLENCE IN OVER 20 COUNTRIES. Recent project sites include: 1. Bangladesh 2. Burkina Faso 3. Burundi 4. Central African Republic 5. Ethiopia 6. Guinea 7. Jordan 8. Kenya 9. Mali 10. The Philippines 11. South Africa 12. Sri Lanka 13. Tunisia 14. Ukraine

CCF IN ACTION: KENYA

During Kenya’s 2017 elections, investments through CCF helped to prevent an outbreak of violence. Past elections in the country had been fraught with violence, particularly in 2007, when 1,300 people were killed and 600,00 displaced. Observers feared that violent conflict would erupt again in 2017, this time between supporters of incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition candidate Raila Odinga.

In the lead-up to the election, the U.S. government used CCF funds to support conflict-prevention projects on the ground. For example, a $485,000 CCF-funded projected countered the proliferation of rumors about the election. The project, implemented by Internews, helped the Media Council of Kenya create a fact-checking desk. Thanks to the fact-checking desk, 162 false news stories were checked, verified, and countered. The CCF-funded project helped prevent harmful rumors from stirring up violence between opposing political groups.

CCF funding was critical in Kenya because it could be rapidly allocated and highly responsive to the situation on the ground. It supported key programs focused on preventing violence during an unforeseen crisis that required urgent action.

CONGRESS SHOULD AUTHORIZE AND FULLY FUND CCF BY PASSING THE GLOBAL FRAGILITY ACT (H.R.2116, S.727)

CCF is the only tool of its kind. It provides global, flexible, and rapid-response funding to prevent and reduce violence. This funding enables USAID to address emerging conflicts before a crisis develops, saving taxpayer dollars and, ultimately, lives.

Congress must continue to work to ensure full funding for the CCF through the appropriations process and by passing the Global Fragility Act of 2019 (H.R.2116, S.727), which authorizes the fund.

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Ben Rowles

  • Program Assistant, Peacebuilding

Ben Rowles served as FCNL's Program Assistant for peacebuilding in 2018-2019. In that capacity he supported FCNL’s lobbying efforts to change U.S. foreign policy from one that is overly militarized to one that prevents, mitigates, and transforms violent conflict. Ben also facilitated the work of the Prevention and Protection Working Group, a group of organizations dedicated to reducing violent crisis, preventing mass atrocities, and protecting civilians threatened by such crises.