What are the needs?
Since 2011, Uganda has been experiencing a number of refugee emergencies with influxes from the eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Since December 2013, people have also been coming from South Sudan into Northern, Midwestern and Central Uganda. With renewed fighting in Juba in July 2016, which has spread into other parts of the country, a new refugee crisis has emerged with even more people crossing into Uganda.
The daily average influx of refugees from South Sudan is still high, at 2 000 refugees, which is still considered as an emergency scenario. With drought having been declared in parts of South Sudan, and a resolution to the political turmoil still not in sight, it is feared that the influx of refugees into Uganda will continue to grow.
Women and children make up a disproportionate amount of the newly arrived refugees, presenting major protection challenges.
The situation in Uganda is exacerbated by other regional conflicts. New arrivals from DRC and Burundi are also entering Uganda through multiple entry points, exceeding 100 new arrivals per day with reported peaks of more than 500 people.
How are we helping?
The European Commission has been responding to the massive influx of refugees from South Sudan, many of whom have settled in northern Uganda, in addition to providing support to the Congolese, Burundian and other refugees in Uganda.
So far in 2017, the European Commission has allocated €38 million to the refugee crisis in Uganda, on top of a €6.7 million allocation earlier in the year, bringing the total allocation to Uganda to €44.7 million. A further €20 million is planned to scale-up the humanitarian response in 2017. This funding aims at addressing emergency and early recovery needs of the refugees.
In the second half of 2016, in response to influx of South Sudanese refugees from July, and to address the major gaps in the general humanitarian operation and response, the European Commission allocated €13 million to the refugee crisis in Uganda, on top of a €7 million allocation earlier in the year. This funding eased the financial gap, particularly in addressing the need for establishing provision of basic services in the new settlements and scaling up efforts to decongest the overly crowded reception centres.
The European Commission, through its partners, supports refugees in Uganda with food assistance, protection, provision of water and sanitation, resilience building and education.