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CRS in Senegal

Despite a stable democracy, a growing economy and a warm culture, which prides itself for its hospitality, Senegal continues to face major challenges toward sustainable growth and development. Those issues include immense unemployment, poor infrastructure, longstanding underinvestment, an inhibiting policy environment, a simmering separatist movement, and a population whose livelihoods are heavily affected by international food prices, droughts and a lack of resiliency. Low levels of education, gender inequality, poor governance, inconsistent agricultural production, aggressive desertification, and the persistence of preventable diseases and malnutrition compromise the country's ability to meet its basic needs, and further contribute to the susceptibility of Senegal's most vulnerable populations. 


People Served: 3,507,672

Population: 13,975,834  (2015 est.)

Size: 75,955 sq. mi.; slightly smaller than South Dakota

CRS' History in Senegal

Catholic Relief Services has worked in Senegal for more than 55 years. In fact, CRS was one of the first international NGOs to begin work when Senegal gained independence in 1960. CRS' long-term presence has allowed us to respond effectively to changing conditions within the country. With four regional offices and a central headquarters in Dakar, CRS Senegal also supports programming in neighboring Mauritania and Guinea Bissau. CRS has supported vulnerable populations from all three countries through its work which responds to natural disasters, separatist violence, economic fluctuations, health epidemics and malnutrition. Working closely with various partners, CRS Senegal provides assistance in a number of sectors.
We are improving food security, nutrition and resilience for those suffering from food crises and chronic vulnerability. The program includes conservation agriculture, food-for-work, cash-for-work, unconditional cash transfers, and community garden activities. We are focusing on the nutritional and income needs of breastfeeding and pregnant women and reducing child malnutrition through monitoring and community health care services. One of our goals is to help vulnerable households to become more resilient to current and future disasters, such as insect invasions, floods, drought, and extreme price fluctuations of agricultural commodities. 
CRS increases the quality of community health services by training community based volunteers in basic health care and healthy habits such as seeking medical care when a child has a fever, recognizing signs of malnourishment, diversifying one’s diet with locally available foods, vaccinating children, sleeping under a mosquito net, and practicing good hygiene behaviors. We are reducing malaria and tuberculosis-related morbidity and mortality through better prevention and treatment. 
We are promoting peace by supporting communities in Casamance to resolve conflicts around natural resource management by bringing communities together in conflict mitigation and resolution training, community connector projects, and savings and internal lending community (SILC) activities.