Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection

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The sound of war will not disappear with a new roof

 “I hear loud shelling every night and sometimes during the day. It started two years ago and now it seems it is escalating again," says Valentina Vladimirovna, aged 65. "I do not know who is shelling. I am not able to walk away. I've been living...

Displaced in Iraq: “A safe place is enough for us.”

We meet Rahima in a dimly-lit room in her makeshift shelter in a dusty suburb of Kirkuk in northern Iraq. A piece of torn cloth, flapping in the hot desert wind, serves as a door. The middle-aged woman has lived here ever since fighters from...

Empowering Central African refugees in Cameroon

Central African women working to reinforce their shelters’ roofs in Ngam refugee camp, Meiganga, Cameroon. © European Union/ECHO/Aminata Diagne Barre
Heavy rains batter Mbilé refugee camp in the east of Cameroon, as Adamou Bakoho, a former breeder and chairman of the 'Committee of Wise Refugee Men', remembers his early days in the camp. “Back in the Central African Republic, we were large-scale...

Refugee baby in Greece triumphs against the odds

As Khadji* welcomes me into her tent, she asks me to have a seat on the ground and she places her little sleeping baby Bikas* on a makeshift bed. The bed is constructed with a slab of iron, supported with iron stakes and covered with blankets.I ask...

Delivering assistance to displaced populations in northern Afghanistan

Hundreds of families have been displaced to the provincial capital of Pul-e-Khumri, Afghanistan. © People in Need
“One morning I heard the sound of gunshots close to our village. We grabbed everything we could and left home,” recounts Sher Ali, one of the many villagers forced to flee from their homes in the district of Dahana-e-Ghori, in Baghlan province,...

From football coaches to hairdressers, camp community in Greece puts everyone's skills to use

At Skaramagas camp in Greece, there are teachers, doctors, lawyers, translators, seamstresses, hairdressers, football coaches…you name it. People fleeing war and violence have left not only their homes behind, but also for the time being, their...

South Sudan crisis worse than ever

How would you describe the humanitarian situation in South Sudan today? MP: It is worse than ever. There are more internally displaced people than ever – 1.6 million – with almost 200 000 people in special 'protection-of-civilians' sites inside UN...

Education in refugee camp in Ethiopia improves lives of ex-child soldiers

Children and women have been the primary victims of the conflict in South Sudan. Many school-aged children, sometimes just 12 or 13 years old, have joined the conflict as child soldiers. Chol Deng*, now 17, was only 14 years old when he joined the...

Amid the tragedy, refugee kids in Greece laugh again

Nine-year-old Zakariah was one of more than a hundred refugee children who took part in the games day on the occasion of Eid. © IRC/Kathleen Prior
Children’s laughter fills the playing yard in Alexandria refugee site in northern Greece, as teams of young refugees snake their way to activities from face painting to hula-hooping. Many are dressed in their finest; flowery dresses with lace white...

From violence in Mali to a safe haven in Mauritania

The European Commission funds summer educational activities for children in the M´Berra camp. © European Union/ECHO/Esther Huerta García
If the wind is right, a UN humanitarian flight only takes two and a half hours from Nouakchott, the capital of Mauritania, to the region of Hodh el Charghi, where M'Berra camp is located. The flight, funded by the European Commission and organised...