Diffa, Niger: a region devastated by the Boko Haram crisis


Niger is affected by violence and population displacements in its border regions that form part of the Central Sahel and the Lake Chad Basin.

To improve healthcare for displaced people, host communities and the population at large ─ in particular children ─ we work with the Ministry of Health and community health workers to deliver integrated health programmes throughout the country.

MSF teams are currently responding to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic in Niger.

Key Activities

Our activities in 2020 in Niger

Data and information from the International Activity Report 2020.

MSF in Niger in 2020 The first few months of the year are usually the least busy for MSF teams in Niger. But everything changed in March 2020 with the spread of COVID-19.
Map of MSF activities in 2020 in Niger

In the capital, Niamey, the city with the most cases, MSF built a treatment centre to care for patients in the first months of the pandemic. We also supported the COVID-19 call centre in Niamey and some health facilities in other major cities.

From June, heavy rains fell, submerging the most impoverished districts of the capital and several parts of Maradi, Tahoua, and Tillabéri. In Niamey, we supplied drinking water and set up mobile clinics to assist people displaced by the floods. In addition, we distributed relief items and provided psychological support in the hardest-hit areas of the city.

In Diffa, Maradi, Magaria, and Tillabéri, our teams treated more patients with malaria than in 2019, mainly due to the shortage of antimalarial medicines and a lack of access to healthcare, both due to the COVID-19 crisis. The early onset of the rainy season also resulted in increased transmission of the disease.

From October to December, we supported a regional hospital in Niamey to improve care for children under the age of 15 by increasing its inpatient capacity, training staff and donating drugs. We also maintained our support to the Ministry of Public Health by boosting inpatient capacity for the treatment of acutely malnourished children in Madarounfa and Magaria. Our teams are developing preventive and community-based approaches to reduce the number of patients with complications from malnutrition; for example, by providing early treatment for malaria, acute respiratory infections and diarrhoea.

Despite the closure of the border during the pandemic, the systematic and illegal expulsion of migrants from Algeria to Niger continued in 2020. MSF teams in Agadez donated essential healthcare supplies, gave psychosocial support, and ran search and rescue operations for migrants lost or abandoned in the desert.

Throughout the year, our teams assisted host communities and displaced people affected by violence in Tillabéri and Diffa regions by offering healthcare and distributing relief items. We also asked the relevant authorities to ensure the protection of civilians and improve assistance to them.


In 2020
Webclip – COVID-19 intervention in Niger – EN

MSF's response to COVID-19 in Niger


Our COVID-19 activities in Niger

May 2020

Niamey, the capital of Niger, is the epicentre of the COVID-19 outbreak in the country.

MSF is supporting the Ministry of Health’s response to the new coronavirus. Audace Ntezukobagira, our emergency coordinator in the Sahel, explains how.

Measles vaccination campaign - Niger May 2021

Niger: “If vaccinations fail to happen, the effects will be felt for years to come”

Interview 21 May 2021
People on the move in Assamaka, Agadez
Refugees, IDPs and people on the move

Deportations put migrants’ lives at risk in Niger

Project Update 20 Apr 2021
COVID-19 Response in Niger
Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic

Facing multiple challenges in responding to COVID-19 in Niger

Project Update 3 Jun 2020
COVID 19 response in Niger

Working with communities during a pandemic

Interview 5 May 2020
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Fleeing violence in Niger, refugees in Mali remain vulnerable

Project Update 9 Mar 2020
People on the move in Assamaka, Agadez
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17 December 2018