Democratic Republic of the Congo
Emergency Assistance for DRC Refugees in Uganda
Japanese

  • ©PWJ ©PWJ
  • ©PWJ ©PWJ
  • Child protection program for DRC refugees in southwestern Uganda ©SCJ Child protection program for DRC refugees in southwestern Uganda ©SCJ
  • Child protection program for DRC refugees in southwestern Uganda ©SCJ Child protection program for DRC refugees in southwestern Uganda ©SCJ

JPF “Emergency Assistance for DRC Refugees in Uganda” Program is Now Active

5th October 2019 19:30

  • Interviewing refugees in Kyaka II Refugee Settlement, Western Uganda ©PWJInterviewing refugees in Kyaka II Refugee Settlement, Western Uganda ©PWJ

In the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a regime change took place for the first time in eighteen years after the 2018 presidential election. After the election, domestic crisis worsened, and inter-ethnic conflicts intensified in the eastern part of the country bordering Uganda. Consequently, the number of people fleeing DRC for Uganda soared. To respond to this rapid increase of refugees, the Ugandan government, in partnership with UN agencies and NGOs, has provided relief in refugee settlements but is facing shortage of funds to adequately do so.

Given this unmet need, JPF decided to mobilize our response program. Since May 2019, JPF member NGOs Association fo Aid and Relief, Japan (AAR), Peace Winds Japan (PWJ), and Save the Children Japan (SCJ) have conducted initial assessments and also implemented child protection, education, WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene), health, and livelihood support programs.

In partnership with local governments and member NGOS, JPF will continue to assess the conditions and needs on the ground and provide prompt assistance for those in need. Updates of our activities can be found on the JPF website and at our Facebook page.

On January 28, 2019, Japan Platform (JPF) decided to launch the assistance program for the refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) who continue to flow into Uganda.

<Overview>

  • After the December 2018 general elections that resulted in a new president and a regime change for the first time in eighteen years in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the crisis worsened in the country. Violent inter-ethnic conflicts in the eastern part of the country bordering Uganda intensified after the elections. While it was estimated that over 310,000 people had fled the DRC to Uganda as of the end of 2018*1, the number is expected to increase to around 390,000 by the end of 2019 if the unrest in eastern DRC continues*2.
  • Of the DRC refugees who have fled to Uganda, 55% are children age 18 or younger who were exposed to high levels of risk during their flight to Uganda and are currently living with severe stress as refugees. Among the DRC refugee children, only 47% of primary- and 8% of secondary-school-age children are in school. Indeed, many are missing out on their education*3.
  • Additionally, with the spread of Ebola Virus Disease in the DRC and Uganda, there is an increased demand in the health care sector to respond to the heightened risk of Ebola infection through prevention and control measures. This would include securing necessary medical supplies and building the capacity of health care providers.
  • Ugandan government has been responding to the surge of DRC refugees in cooperation with UN agencies and NGOs as they provide assistance in the refugee settlements, but there has not been sufficient funding for the effort. JPF decided to launch our response program in January 2019, and starting in May, one of the three NGOs that desired to take part in the response began to implement child protection. Then in August 2019, we decided to extend the response program for another 12 months to better meet the growing needs of DRC refugees.

JPF will work with our member NGOs as we bring prompt emergency relief that meets the needs on the ground. Further updates will be posted on our website and on our Facebook page.

*1 UNHCR, Uganda Operational Update (December 2018)
*2 UNHCR, DRC Influx Dashboard Joint Border Mentoring Uganda Refugee response (June 2019)
*3 UNHCR, The Democratic Republic of Congo Regional Refugee Response Plan January 2019 - December 2020 (June 2019)

Program Overview

Term May 1, 2019 - October 31, 2020 (Emergency Response Period)
Budget 256 million yen (Government Subsidies)
Content Initial assessment, child protection, education, WASH (water, sanitation & hygiene), health, livelihood assistance
Organizations PWJ, SCJ, AAR
Locations Multiple locations within Uganda

*Term and budget subject to change based on future developments.