Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel


Embed this content in your HTML

Search

Report adult content:

click to rate:

Account: (login)

More Channels


Channel Catalog


older | 1 | (Page 2) | 3 | newer

    0 0

    Refugee influx into Uganda worrying, warns CARE

    Posted
    2/14/18

    Majority of women have experienced or witnessed gender-based violence on their way to Uganda; dead refugee bodies thrown into Lake Albert

    KAMPALA (February 14, 2018) — The refugee influx from the Democratic Republic of Congo into Uganda is increasingly worrying, warns CARE. Thousands of Congolese refugees arrived into western Uganda over the weekend, a sharp escalation from the 14,000 who had fled the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) into the east African country since December.

    “Last week people were arriving in the  hundreds, now we’re seeing thousands arrive every day,” says Delphine Pinault, CARE’s country director for Uganda. “People arrive exhausted, dehydrated, hungry and emotionally devastated.  They are running for their lives.” 

    Many travel to safety by fishing boats from the Congolese side of Lake Albert. A perilous journey taking as long as eight hours.

    “We’ve heard stories of people waiting to cross from the other side who are spending the night in the lake for fear of being attacked. They stay in the lake and wait for a boat to take them to safety here in Uganda,” says Pinault. 

    The majority of refugees are women and children, fleeing inter communal violence in eastern Congo.  Most are heavily traumatized. Over the last days however, more men are starting to arrive.  An ongoing CARE assessment is finding that many women have directly experienced or witnessed at least one form of gender-based violence.  Many are forced to pay armed groups to cross into Uganda, using whatever means they have. Some Congolese are executed for attempting to leave DRC. 

    “Two days ago, three of the boats making the crossing capsized, killing at least four people. We’re hearing harrowing accounts from people who have waited days to make the crossing. They have no food, if they die, their bodies are thrown overboard. There are feces floating in the water, people are bathing in it, others are gathering water. It’s a miracle we haven’t yet had an outbreak,” says Pinault.

    The needs are vast, ranging from clean water, food, and shelter to trauma counseling, psychosocial support and general support to survivors of sexual violence.

    Uganda is already hosting close to 1.4 million refugees, one million from South Sudan and nearly 250,000 from DRC, leaving the country with reduced capacity to face another massive influx of refugees. Many Congolese are arriving into Uganda’s densely populated south west, limiting space for large-scale refugee settlements. At least one settlement sheltering Congolese refugees is already about to reach full capacity. 

    “We are just seeing the beginning of this crisis,” says Pinault. “We need to be prepared to respond to what’s ahead. Our initial calculations expected 30,000 people but we now have to be prepared for as many as 60,000 or more.” 

    Note to editors: 

    The humanitarian situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has deteriorated dramatically over the past year. A surge in violent conflict and intercommunal tensions forced more than 1.7 million people to flee their homes in 2017, an average of more than 5,500 people per day. More than 5 million Congolese are now displaced, over 670,000 are currently seeking refuge in neighbouring countries. 

    The majority of Congolese refugees arriving in Uganda are from North Kivu but refugees from violence in other parts of eastern Congo are also making the journey including Djugu territory and Rutshuru province.

    About CARE
    Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside women and girls because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. That’s why women and girls are at the heart of CARE’s community-based efforts to improve education and health, create economic opportunity, respond to emergencies and confront hunger. Last year CARE worked in 93 countries and reached 63 million people around the world. Learn more at care.org. 

    Media Contacts
    Nicole Harris, nharris@care.org, 404-735-0871   

     

    Kyaka II is in Western Uganda and is being used by the government of Uganda to settle refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo. CREDIT: CARE/Edward Richard Ahonobadha

    Donate


    0 0

    Cholera Outbreak in Uganda Poses Further Risk to Congolese Refugees

    Posted
    3/5/18

    KAMPALA, Uganda (March 5, 2018) — Thousands of Congolese seeking refuge at settlements in southwestern Uganda are at risk of contracting cholera, warns the humanitarian aid organization CARE.

    According to the Ugandan Ministry of Health, 34 people have died and 1,257 cases have been confirmed. Cholera, an acute infectious disease, is spread through eating contaminated food and drinking contaminated water. If not treated, it can quickly prove fatal.

    The outbreak has been declared in a number of sites including the refugee settlement of Kyangwali, home to thousands of Congolese who have fled fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in recent weeks.

    CARE is working in Kyangwali, providing assistance to survivors of sexual and gender-based violence. Most of the refugees crossing into Uganda from DRC are women and girls, and many have experienced one or more forms of gender-based violence during their flight to Uganda.

    “This outbreak has come at a particularly bad time,” Delphine Pinault, country director for CARE Uganda. “People are exhausted, especially women and girls who have already suffered so much trauma. In addition to the worrying health implications, families face further dislocation should this outbreak spread further. They face losing their loved ones, parents and caregivers, and will become even more isolated and more vulnerable if we don’t act quickly.

    “We’ve seen waves of refugees arriving in the thousands in the last few weeks. The needs are overwhelming as we simply don’t have the resources to meet them. We urgently need more funds if we don’t want to lose more lives,” said Pinault.

    According to the UNHCR, more than 45, 000 refugees from DRC have arrived in Uganda since Jan. 1.

    About CARE

    Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside women and girls because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. That’s why women and girls are at the heart of CARE’s community-based efforts to improve education and health, create economic opportunity, respond to emergencies and confront hunger. Last year CARE worked in 93 countries and reached 63 million people around the world. Learn more at care.org.

    Media Contact

    Nicole Harris, nharris@care.org, 404-735-0871

    Thousands of Congolese seeking refuge at settlements in southwestern Uganda are at risk of contracting cholera. CARE is working in the Kyangwali settlement to support survivors of sexual and gender-based violence. More than 45,000 refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo have arrived in Uganda since Jan. 1.  Kate Holt/CARE

    Tagged: 

    Donate


    0 0

    Menstrual cups make a difference for refugee women

    Posted
    3/27/18

    Harriet, 25, lives in Impevi, a settlement for South Sudanese refugees in Uganda. She arrived at Impevi in March 2017 with her husband, parents, and two small daughters, the youngest barely 3 months old at the time. The family had fled their home in South Sudan, walking for days to reach safety in Uganda.   

    “It was very hot. We started walking in the morning but had to rest often during the day as the children were very small,” she says. “I had to carry the little one the whole way.”  

    Since the spike in violence in South Sudan in July 2016, there has been a major influx of hundreds of thousands South Sudanese refugees in northwestern Uganda, making it the lead refugee-hosting country in Africa. There are more than 1 million refugees from South Sudan and DRC in Uganda. Women and children make up more than 80 percent of the refugee population. Due to the impact of the conflict on communities and households, women often take on the arduous displacement journey to seek refuge in Uganda without male relatives, carrying and caring for many children on the way. 

    Before the war Harriet worked as a nursery school teacher, but since her qualifications aren’t recognized in Uganda, she had to look for other work. Motivated to do something for the camp community, she took a position with CARE.  

    Harriet works on a pilot project with CARE to distribute menstrual cups to 100 of the settlement’s female residents. Menstrual cups are an alternative to sanitary pads and are reusable for up to 10 years. The silicone cups produce no waste and cleaning them requires little water.  ECHO is financing this pilot project and supporting CARE’s tests of menstrual cups’ feasibility in terms of cultural acceptance and access to water, carefully assessing if use is safe in contexts where limited water is accessible.    

    “The menstrual cup changed my life,” Harriet says. “At first, my husband was not convinced. He wanted to be sure that it is not harmful for me. But then I explained to him how it worked and he was grateful that I had received one. Now, when I get my period, I feel completely free and clean. I can go about my business and I am no longer stuck at home.”  

    Harriet is part of a small group of women trained by CARE and local partner WOMENA in the benefits and use of menstrual cups. The price of sanitary pads alone makes them unaffordable to many of the refugees.  

    “Buying the pads on a monthly basis is a huge task for most women and girls in the camps,” explains Harriet. “Most families have little money to spend on numerous needs and buying the sanitary towels is least important. It forces many girls to miss school at the times when they are having their cycles.” 

    Kerstin Blidi is Fundraising Coordinator of CARE International. 

    By
    Kerstin Blidi

    Harriet, 25, lives in Impevi, a settlement for South Sudanese refugees in Uganda. She works on a pilot project with CARE to distribute menstrual cups to 100 of the settlement’s female residents. Photo credit: Edward Ahonobadha/CARE

    Donate


    0 0
  • 03/27/18--13:54: A refugee and role model
  • A refugee and role model

    Posted
    3/27/18

    Oliver Taban is living as a refugee in Uganda for the second time. The 30-year-old South Sudanese grew up in Uganda before returning to what was then southern Sudan in 2004, only to flee again in 2016.  

    Oliver’s home is Rhino Camp, a settlement of South Sudanese refugees in northwestern Uganda, where he lives with his wife and young daughter. Although he once worked as a civil servant in Juba, South Sudan, today being a role model is Oliver’s job.   

     “It’s important for the men to understand that they have an important role to play in a marriage, even if they are no longer able to provide for their family,” Oliver says. “The wife and the husband need to work together; the family life is a matter for both.” 

    Since the spike in violence in South Sudan in July 2016, there has been a major influx of hundreds of thousands South Sudanese refugees in northwestern Uganda making it the lead refugee-hosting country in Africa. There are more than 1 million refugees from South Sudan and DRC in Uganda.  

    Asking men to re-think their relationships with their wives wasn’t an easy task. “But many horrible things happened to them and their wives back in South Sudan and on their journey to Uganda,” he says.     

    With support from CARE, Oliver helps the camp’s men adjust to their new lives at Rhino. With few options for work, many are unable to provide for their families and struggle to accept this new status. To cope with this loss of self-esteem, often coupled with hopelessness, some men resort to alcohol and drugs with often devastating consequences for their wives and families, including domestic and gender-based violence. 

    “We are all refugees and in this together,” he says. “We need to support each other so that we can have a better life, especially our children.” 

     Kerstin Blidi is Fundraising Coordinator at CARE International.

    By
    Kerstin Blidi

    Oliver Taban helps husbands and wives find common ground in Rhino Camp, a settlement of South Sudanese refugees in northwestern Uganda. Photo credit: Edward Ahonobadha

    Donate


    0 0
  • 03/28/18--08:40: Learning how to heal
  • Learning how to heal

    Posted
    3/28/18

    Dudu Grace Edward is a 45-year-old single mother from South Sudan. She had to flee her home and is now living in a refugee settlement in Uganda. In total, more than 1 million people have fled to Uganda from South Sudan. Eighty-five percent of them are women and children. In July 2017 the other camp residents selected Grace as a Gender Based Violence (GBV) Preventer. GBV Preventers like Grace help engage the community, raise awareness of the issue, and show how everyone can work together to support those exposed to violence, especially women and girls. Grace is one of 80 GBV preventers that were selected, trained and supported by CARE.

    The first step for Grace, and other GBV Preventers is training. Grace became well versed in GBV concepts, basic counseling, raising awareness and mobilizing the community. Her CARE training has opened the door for her to be a positive role model for her community and to make an impact by identifying and helping those who suffer from GBV. “I am really very happy to be working with CARE. They trained us well. I had had some training from other agencies, but when I attended CARE’s training I understood GBV better,” Grace says. “Every time we need support, the CARE team responds immediately. When I put on the T-shirt, the community easily identifies me with CARE and I feel happy. I really want to be a good role model.” 

    Annet* had a traumatizing trip to Uganda. She traveled with 20 people, including her two children, and the two orphaned children of her sister. They were stopped by armed men many times. One of those times she was taken into the bush and raped. The people traveling with her did whatever they could to make sure she would be released. Together with the four children in her care she continued her flight.  

    After arriving in Uganda, Annet had a difficult time settling into her new environment. While some neighbors did their best to help her, she was sick and traumatized from her journey. Her daughter was also very sick. She started thinking about suicide or going back to her home in South Sudan. 

    Annet’s healing began when she met Grace. “Grace asked me how I was doing, and I started crying. I told her there was no future for my children here, and we are always hungry. My daughter had been sick. I told Grace I might go back,” Annet says. Grace told her that she should first consider that her family is safer than back home in South Sudan, that in Uganda her children can go to school and she can feed them. “Grace told me to be strong. She was very supportive and encouraged me to stay for the sake of my children.” Grace knows what it feels like to be a refugee – she’s been through similar experiences.  

    Grace made sure that Annet began receiving assistance. She joined a workshop on trauma healing. “It took me about a month until I got better. Soon I adapted to my new community and feel so much more comfortable now,” Annet says.   

    Today Annet participates in a women’s group making bricks for a women’s center they are planning to build nearby. She also cuts grass to sell in bundles to use on the thatched roofs of shelters. She is supporting other refugees now as a member of her Village Health Team.  

    “I will return to South Sudan if there is peace, but I am comfortable here now because of CARE and my friend Grace.”  

    *Name has been changed 

    By
    Massa Kenneth and Charles Lilley, CARE Uganda

    Dudu Grace Edward is a 45-year-old single mother from South Sudan. She had to flee her home and is now living in a refugee camp in Uganda. In July 2017 the other camp residents selected her as a “Gender Based Violence (GBV) Preventer.” Photo credit: Kenneth Massa/CARE Uganda

    Tagged: 

    Donate


    0 0
  • 03/28/18--12:04: The sewing circle of Arua
  • The sewing circle of Arua

    Posted
    3/28/18

    Regina arrived at Rhino Camp, a settlement of South Sudanese refugees in northwest Uganda’s Arua district, in July 2016. She’d fled her home in South Sudan, with her five siblings and two of her children, the youngest only 2 months old.  

    “Being both a single mother of two young children and a refugee is challenging. At the beginning I did not know what to do. I did not know how to take care of the house and how to get food for my children,” she explains. 

    Since the spike in violence in South Sudan in July 2016, there has been a major influx of hundreds of thousands South Sudanese refugees in northwestern Uganda, making it the lead refugee hosting country in Africa. There are more than 1 million refugees from South Sudan and DRC in Uganda. Women and children make up more than 80 percent of the refugee population. Due to the impact of the conflict on communities and households, women often take on the arduous displacement journey to seek refuge in Uganda without male relatives, carrying and caring for many children on the way. 

    Things began to improve for Regina after she joined a CARE women’s group. The group knits and sews together and sells their products to both refugees and host communities in the area. With a small income from knitting and embroidery, Regina can feed her family and buy school uniforms for her children.  

    Each week, the women also put aside a little money as a special welfare fund to help if someone’s child falls ill and needs medical attention. While medical treatment is free, transport to and from the clinic requires money. The village savings and loan group, which is organized by CARE, also funds loans for new initiatives the women would like to try.  

    For Regina, the benefits are social as well as financial. Many of the group’s 40 women are single mothers. They meet every Sunday after church in order to knit, to sew, and to chat about issues that affect their lives including gender-based violence.  

    This is the second time Regina has been a refugee in Uganda. Rhino Camp was her childhood home before returning to what was then southern Sudan when she was 8 years old. Her father died a year later, leaving her mother to raise the family alone. Regina finished school and worked as an assistant at a local clinic. Thanks to her education, she also counsels her friends and colleagues at Rhino Camp in an effort to reduce the stress and trauma experienced by many through their country’s war and the long journey to safety in Uganda. 

    “With the money I earn, I would like to go back to school and extend my medical skills so that I can serve the community,” she says. “But I am not hopeful of going back to South Sudan. When there is war, there is no hope.” 

    Kerstin Blidi is CARE International's Fundraising Coordinator.

    By
    Kerstin Blidi

    In Uganda's Rhino refugee camp, South Sudanese refugees carry things for the market. Photo credit: Jakob Dall

    Donate


    0 0
  • 04/12/18--13:24: Sustainable Economies
  • Sustainable Economies

    We talk a lot about value chains within our economic development work — but what are they and why are they important?

    A value chain is the full range of activities, from production to marketing to distribution, that are required to bring a product from its conception to the consumer.

    CARE promotes changes in value chains that generate positive, sustained impacts for large numbers of marginalized households in terms of income, employment, power relations and access to products and services that empower the poor to better their lives.  

    Projects

    CARE has more than 560 projects that support sustainable economies. We prioritize looking at power dynamics so poor families—especially women—have access to information, appropriate agricultural and productive resources, and assets.

    Models

    CARE works to improve women’s access to markets to unlock greater production, profits on small-scale agriculture, food security, and improved nutrition.

    Publications

    Find out what we’re learning about how to create change across a range of market actors so that the poorest families can access the markets they need to create opportunities for themselves.

    Partnerships

    CARE works with the whole of the market system to ensure that we can create sustainable change for the people we serve. This includes working with the private sector, government regulatory bodies, and service providers in the communities and regions where we work.

    Where We Work

    0 0

    IRIN: For victims of the Ituri conflict’s sexual violence, aid is scarce

    Posted
    3/20/18

    IRIN quoted Delphine Pinault, CARE Uganda’s country director, in a story about the lack of aid for sexual violence victims and refugees fleeing conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In Uganda, where millions are fleeing, CARE is providing counseling and group activities to survivors of gender-based violence. “Despite the prevalence of rape and other forms of sexual violence, at the community level, stigma surrounding being a survivor still persists, including being ridiculed, rejected and isolated as a result of the shame,” she said. Read the story here.  

    Over the past year there has been nearly a million refugees from South Sudan flowing into northern Uganda. The South Sudanese are being driven from their homes by violence and driven into hunger. Credit: Peter Caton/CARE

    Donate


    0 0

    This 42 page document covers the Forest Resources Sector Transparency (FOREST) Programme, a partnership between a wide range of stakeholders. CARE Denmark with financial support from DANIDA worked with CARE International in Uganda in partnership with Advocates Coalition for Development and Environment (ACODE), Anti- Corruption Coalition Uganda (ACCU), Rwenzori Anti-Corruption Coalition (RAC), Mid-West Anti-Corruption Coalition (MIRAC), Joint Effort to Save the Environment (JESE), PANOS Eastern Africa and Water and Environment Journalists Network (WEMNET).

    Country: 
    Published Date: 
    Thursday, April 19, 2018

    0 0

    A young mother starts over in Uganda

    Posted
    4/26/18

    The fish market-turned-landing site at Sebagoro on Uganda’s Lake Albert is no longer full of thousands of refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo, no longer a makeshift settlement where women build up temporary tents out of the traditional kitenge fabric to protect themselves from the sun. A few people rest in the shade or stand with the few belongings they managed to bring; others are lined up awaiting medical attention, the calm atmosphere a stark difference from what I saw just a few weeks ago on my first visit. The horrifying water and sanitation conditions — where you could once see feces floating in the same water women were washing their clothes and children filling up bottles of water — are no longer blatantly obvious.  

    I visited Sebagoro for the first time in early February during the height of the refugee influx across Lake Albert. At that time several thousands of refugees were arriving weekly, and boats were arriving almost every hour. I spoke with many refugees who told me the horrors they faced not only on the other side of the lake but also what they endured in transit: boats capsizing or children falling overboard and drowning due to overcrowding and rough waters. Although the influx has slowed — about 30 people arrived the day of my most recent visit — the stories remain eerily similar. The conflict doesn’t look as if it will end anytime soon and the hope for peace in DRC is wavering. 

    One of the refugee women I spoke to this visit was Gloria*. She is 18 years old and fled from her village in Ituri province along with her husband and 2-year-old daughter. In DRC she was a small-scale farmer and her husband a fisherman and avid footballer who played for their village team and competed in inter-village matches. She told me her story while sitting in front of a boat similar to the one she arrived in, one she says was very crowded with people and their belongings, and costs 20,000 Ugandan shillings per person for the journey.  

    She says that the conflict hadn’t reached her village yet but was nearing every day – with a nearby village falling victim to the inter-ethnic violence that is spreading across the Ituri Province. She looks down at the ground and says that there have been a lot of mass killings, with perpetrators using machetes to cut people to pieces, houses being burned to the ground, and the stealing of livestock and land. She and her husband made the difficult decision to leave before their village was destroyed, leaving most of their belongings behind. When I asked her if she plans on ever going back she looked past me and said, “DRC will never have peace – if there’s no war today, there’s war tomorrow.” An echo of what I have heard from the countless Congolese refugees.  

    Although the hope for peace in DRC is small, the hope for peace is what has kept the will to rebuild a new life alive. Gloria says she’s heard that in Uganda’s Kyangwali Refugee Settlement she will get the opportunity to restart her life in peace where there are services available to support her like CARE’s Women and Girls Center, a safe space where women can access health services, including support for survivors of gender-based violence, among other things. But most importantly all she really wants now is peace. 

    *Name has been changed 

    By
    Ruwani Dharmakirthi

    Gloria* is 18 years old and fled from her village in Ituri province in the DRC along with her husband and 2-year-old daughter. They now live in Uganda’s Kyangwali Refugee Settlement. *Name changed. Photo credit: Thomas Markert/CARE

    Donate


    0 0

    Funding Gaps Threaten Critical Aid for Refugees in Uganda, Says CARE and 25 Other Ngos

    Posted
    6/28/18

    June 28, 2018 -- Uganda hosts the largest number of refugees in Africa, and is among the top refugee-hosting countries globally. Every day, more people, mostly women and children, continue to arrive in search of safety. The Government of Uganda has shown tremendous generosity in opening its borders to so many vulnerable refugees and granting them access to land and services, freedom of movement and the right to work.

     

    However, the international community has not stepped up to share this responsibility, despite commitments made in the 2016 New York Declaration and the subsequent Global Compact for Refugees. Halfway through the year, Uganda’s 2018 Integrated Refugee Response Plan (RRP) is only 6% funded and faces a critical shortfall. Where funding has been made available, it is largely short-term, covering 3-6 months and unsuitable for the chronic long-term needs of vulnerable refugees.

     

    Our organizations, working to support Uganda’s comprehensive response, see the impact of this funding gap every day. The ongoing influx means services are seriously overstretched. Many refugees have no access to vital primary health care, and health centers are short of beds, medicine and staff. Access to water in some areas is just 60% of the recommended minimum standards, meaning refugees are going without adequate sanitation and safe water. Some refugees have to sleep overnight at tap stands in order to get water. This is putting lives at risk, as evidenced by the recent cholera outbreak in southwest Uganda which killed at least 49 people. After great effort, the outbreak has only recently been brought under control, but could flare up again at any moment.

     

    Having to walk several kilometers to access services means women and children are exposed to numerous risks. There are widespread reports of sexual violence against young children and women in and around settlements, yet the availability and quality of services are inadequate, which is also leading to under-reporting by survivors. For example, in Kyangwali settlement, just 1% of SGBV survivors receive health services. In addition, thousands of unaccompanied children are particularly vulnerable to abuse and exploitation, and without increased investment in protection services, their vulnerability will only increase. Many new arrivals show signs of severe psychological distress and trauma after their experiences, yet mental health and psychosocial support services are scarce.

     

    Some 59% of refugee children in Uganda – around 300,000 children – are not receiving an education. Dozens of school structures that were constructed as temporary learning spaces are now on the verge of collapse, and there are no funds for repairs. Newly built learning centers for new arrivals remain closed as there are no funds to open them. Meanwhile many teachers’ salaries will soon run out, before the most critical time of the school year when exams must be sat. Girls are dropping out of school or failing to enroll, and as a result some are reverting to transactional sex or are married off early, and often forcefully, by their caregivers to make ends meet.

     

    Some settlements, such as Kyaka II and Kyangwali, have doubled in size in recent months and the land and natural resources available for new refugees are rapidly shrinking, increasing the risk of inter-personal conflict within the settlements. In order to host new arrivals, existing refugees are being required to give away land they have depended on for cultivation, but have not been provided with alternatives to compensate them for the loss of food or income. Greater investment in diverse, dignified and durable livelihood options is needed if new refugees are to become self-reliant.

    Given these huge needs and within a context of an already severely underfunded refugee response, we are extremely concerned by the allegations of fraud and corruption and fully support the donor community’s demands for greater accountability. In response to these allegations, in February UNCHR with the Government of Uganda launched the largest biometric refugee verification exercise worldwide. The exercise is now well underway, alongside implementation of other concrete steps, such as independent monitoring and improved reporting and referral systems, to ensure more transparent management of funds and aid in kind.

     

    While verification goes on, it is clear the needs remain enormous and urgent. Refugees and their host communities cannot wait for assistance any longer. We urge the donor community to not only continue but urgently step up its contribution to the refugee response, to reflect the level of need.

    We are extremely concerned that the funding gap is not only preventing effective service delivery and leading to a deterioration in welfare of existing refugees, but is also leaving Uganda seriously under-prepared for a major new refugee influx. More than 110,000 new refugees have already arrived in Uganda this year, at an average rate of 767 people every day. The lack of funding and short-term nature of available funds mean the humanitarian community was unable to prepare effectively for this influx. Another quarter of a million people are expected by the end of the year, but any further escalation of violence or deterioration in food security in South Sudan or DRC could send this number spiraling. This time, donors must invest to ensure Uganda is better prepared to manage this ever-increasing number of refugees.

     

    NGOs are already contributing significant financial and human resources, but we can only contribute so much. We urge donors to ensure that – while progress on the Joint Accountability Framework is monitored – the Refugee Response Plan is funded to reflect the scale of need, and that, in the light and spirit of the CRRF, longer-term multi-year predictable funding is provided.

     

     

    Signed by 26 international organizations:

     

    Action Against Hunger

    ADRA

    CARE

    CESVI

    Catholic Relief Services

    DCA

    Danish Refugee Council

    Finn Church Aid

    Finnish Refugee Council

    Humanity & Inclusion

    Cooperation

    IJM

    International Rescue Committee

    IRRI

    The Johanniter International Assistance

    The Lutheran World Federation

    Mercy Corps

    Medical Teams International

    Norwegian Refugee Council

    Oxfam

    Plan International

    Save the Children

    War Child Holland

    Welt Hunger Hilfe

    World Vision

    ZOA

     

    About CARE       

    Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside women and girls because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. That’s why women and girls are at the heart of CARE’s community-based efforts to improve education and health, create economic opportunity, respond to emergencies and confront hunger. Last year CARE worked in 93 countries and reached more than 63 million people around the world. Learn more at care.org.

     

    Media Contact

    Brian Feagans, bfeagans@care.org; 404-979-9453

    A young girl returns to her temporary family shelter after eating lunch at the transit center in the Imvepi refugee settlement in northwestern Uganda. International development organizations, including CARE, fear funding gaps will threaten aid for refugees like her. (Edward Echwalu/CARE)

    Tagged: 

    Donate


    0 0
  • 03/28/18--08:40: Learning how to heal
  • Learning how to heal

    Posted
    3/28/18

    Dudu Grace Edward is a 45-year-old single mother from South Sudan. She had to flee her home and is now living in a refugee settlement in Uganda. In total, more than 1 million people have fled to Uganda from South Sudan. Eighty-five percent of them are women and children. In July 2017 the other camp residents selected Grace as a Gender Based Violence (GBV) Preventer. GBV Preventers like Grace help engage the community, raise awareness of the issue, and show how everyone can work together to support those exposed to violence, especially women and girls. Grace is one of 80 GBV preventers that were selected, trained and supported by CARE.

    The first step for Grace, and other GBV Preventers is training. Grace became well versed in GBV concepts, basic counseling, raising awareness and mobilizing the community. Her CARE training has opened the door for her to be a positive role model for her community and to make an impact by identifying and helping those who suffer from GBV. “I am really very happy to be working with CARE. They trained us well. I had had some training from other agencies, but when I attended CARE’s training I understood GBV better,” Grace says. “Every time we need support, the CARE team responds immediately. When I put on the T-shirt, the community easily identifies me with CARE and I feel happy. I really want to be a good role model.” 

    Annet* had a traumatizing trip to Uganda. She traveled with 20 people, including her two children, and the two orphaned children of her sister. They were stopped by armed men many times. One of those times she was taken into the bush and raped. The people traveling with her did whatever they could to make sure she would be released. Together with the four children in her care she continued her flight.  

    After arriving in Uganda, Annet had a difficult time settling into her new environment. While some neighbors did their best to help her, she was sick and traumatized from her journey. Her daughter was also very sick. She started thinking about suicide or going back to her home in South Sudan. 

    Annet’s healing began when she met Grace. “Grace asked me how I was doing, and I started crying. I told her there was no future for my children here, and we are always hungry. My daughter had been sick. I told Grace I might go back,” Annet says. Grace told her that she should first consider that her family is safer than back home in South Sudan, that in Uganda her children can go to school and she can feed them. “Grace told me to be strong. She was very supportive and encouraged me to stay for the sake of my children.” Grace knows what it feels like to be a refugee – she’s been through similar experiences.  

    Grace made sure that Annet began receiving assistance. She joined a workshop on trauma healing. “It took me about a month until I got better. Soon I adapted to my new community and feel so much more comfortable now,” Annet says.   

    Today Annet participates in a women’s group making bricks for a women’s center they are planning to build nearby. She also cuts grass to sell in bundles to use on the thatched roofs of shelters. She is supporting other refugees now as a member of her Village Health Team.  

    “I will return to South Sudan if there is peace, but I am comfortable here now because of CARE and my friend Grace.”  

    *Name has been changed 

    By
    Massa Kenneth and Charles Lilley, CARE Uganda

    Dudu Grace Edward is a 45-year-old single mother from South Sudan. She had to flee her home and is now living in a refugee camp in Uganda. In July 2017 the other camp residents selected her as a “Gender Based Violence (GBV) Preventer.” Photo credit: Kenneth Massa/CARE Uganda

    Tagged: 

    Donate


    0 0
  • 03/28/18--12:04: The sewing circle of Arua
  • The sewing circle of Arua

    Posted
    3/28/18

    Regina arrived at Rhino Camp, a settlement of South Sudanese refugees in northwest Uganda’s Arua district, in July 2016. She’d fled her home in South Sudan, with her five siblings and two of her children, the youngest only 2 months old.  

    “Being both a single mother of two young children and a refugee is challenging. At the beginning I did not know what to do. I did not know how to take care of the house and how to get food for my children,” she explains. 

    Since the spike in violence in South Sudan in July 2016, there has been a major influx of hundreds of thousands South Sudanese refugees in northwestern Uganda, making it the lead refugee hosting country in Africa. There are more than 1 million refugees from South Sudan and DRC in Uganda. Women and children make up more than 80 percent of the refugee population. Due to the impact of the conflict on communities and households, women often take on the arduous displacement journey to seek refuge in Uganda without male relatives, carrying and caring for many children on the way. 

    Things began to improve for Regina after she joined a CARE women’s group. The group knits and sews together and sells their products to both refugees and host communities in the area. With a small income from knitting and embroidery, Regina can feed her family and buy school uniforms for her children.  

    Each week, the women also put aside a little money as a special welfare fund to help if someone’s child falls ill and needs medical attention. While medical treatment is free, transport to and from the clinic requires money. The village savings and loan group, which is organized by CARE, also funds loans for new initiatives the women would like to try.  

    For Regina, the benefits are social as well as financial. Many of the group’s 40 women are single mothers. They meet every Sunday after church in order to knit, to sew, and to chat about issues that affect their lives including gender-based violence.  

    This is the second time Regina has been a refugee in Uganda. Rhino Camp was her childhood home before returning to what was then southern Sudan when she was 8 years old. Her father died a year later, leaving her mother to raise the family alone. Regina finished school and worked as an assistant at a local clinic. Thanks to her education, she also counsels her friends and colleagues at Rhino Camp in an effort to reduce the stress and trauma experienced by many through their country’s war and the long journey to safety in Uganda. 

    “With the money I earn, I would like to go back to school and extend my medical skills so that I can serve the community,” she says. “But I am not hopeful of going back to South Sudan. When there is war, there is no hope.” 

    Kerstin Blidi is CARE International's Fundraising Coordinator.

    By
    Kerstin Blidi

    In Uganda's Rhino refugee camp, South Sudanese refugees carry things for the market. Photo credit: Jakob Dall

    Donate


    0 0
  • 04/12/18--13:24: Sustainable Economies
  • Sustainable Economies

    We talk a lot about value chains within our economic development work — but what are they and why are they important?

    A value chain is the full range of activities, from production to marketing to distribution, that are required to bring a product from its conception to the consumer.

    CARE promotes changes in value chains that generate positive, sustained impacts for large numbers of marginalized households in terms of income, employment, power relations and access to products and services that empower the poor to better their lives.  

    Projects

    CARE has more than 560 projects that support sustainable economies. We prioritize looking at power dynamics so poor families—especially women—have access to information, appropriate agricultural and productive resources, and assets.

    Models

    CARE works to improve women’s access to markets to unlock greater production, profits on small-scale agriculture, food security, and improved nutrition.

    Publications

    Find out what we’re learning about how to create change across a range of market actors so that the poorest families can access the markets they need to create opportunities for themselves.

    Partnerships

    CARE works with the whole of the market system to ensure that we can create sustainable change for the people we serve. This includes working with the private sector, government regulatory bodies, and service providers in the communities and regions where we work.

    Where We Work

    0 0

    IRIN: For victims of the Ituri conflict’s sexual violence, aid is scarce

    Posted
    3/20/18

    IRIN quoted Delphine Pinault, CARE Uganda’s country director, in a story about the lack of aid for sexual violence victims and refugees fleeing conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In Uganda, where millions are fleeing, CARE is providing counseling and group activities to survivors of gender-based violence. “Despite the prevalence of rape and other forms of sexual violence, at the community level, stigma surrounding being a survivor still persists, including being ridiculed, rejected and isolated as a result of the shame,” she said. Read the story here.  

    Over the past year there has been nearly a million refugees from South Sudan flowing into northern Uganda. The South Sudanese are being driven from their homes by violence and driven into hunger. Credit: Peter Caton/CARE

    Donate


    0 0

    This 42 page document covers the Forest Resources Sector Transparency (FOREST) Programme, a partnership between a wide range of stakeholders. CARE Denmark with financial support from DANIDA worked with CARE International in Uganda in partnership with Advocates Coalition for Development and Environment (ACODE), Anti- Corruption Coalition Uganda (ACCU), Rwenzori Anti-Corruption Coalition (RAC), Mid-West Anti-Corruption Coalition (MIRAC), Joint Effort to Save the Environment (JESE), PANOS Eastern Africa and Water and Environment Journalists Network (WEMNET).

    Country: 
    Published Date: 
    Thursday, April 19, 2018

    0 0

    A young mother starts over in Uganda

    Posted
    4/26/18

    The fish market-turned-landing site at Sebagoro on Uganda’s Lake Albert is no longer full of thousands of refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo, no longer a makeshift settlement where women build up temporary tents out of the traditional kitenge fabric to protect themselves from the sun. A few people rest in the shade or stand with the few belongings they managed to bring; others are lined up awaiting medical attention, the calm atmosphere a stark difference from what I saw just a few weeks ago on my first visit. The horrifying water and sanitation conditions — where you could once see feces floating in the same water women were washing their clothes and children filling up bottles of water — are no longer blatantly obvious.  

    I visited Sebagoro for the first time in early February during the height of the refugee influx across Lake Albert. At that time several thousands of refugees were arriving weekly, and boats were arriving almost every hour. I spoke with many refugees who told me the horrors they faced not only on the other side of the lake but also what they endured in transit: boats capsizing or children falling overboard and drowning due to overcrowding and rough waters. Although the influx has slowed — about 30 people arrived the day of my most recent visit — the stories remain eerily similar. The conflict doesn’t look as if it will end anytime soon and the hope for peace in DRC is wavering. 

    One of the refugee women I spoke to this visit was Gloria*. She is 18 years old and fled from her village in Ituri province along with her husband and 2-year-old daughter. In DRC she was a small-scale farmer and her husband a fisherman and avid footballer who played for their village team and competed in inter-village matches. She told me her story while sitting in front of a boat similar to the one she arrived in, one she says was very crowded with people and their belongings, and costs 20,000 Ugandan shillings per person for the journey.  

    She says that the conflict hadn’t reached her village yet but was nearing every day – with a nearby village falling victim to the inter-ethnic violence that is spreading across the Ituri Province. She looks down at the ground and says that there have been a lot of mass killings, with perpetrators using machetes to cut people to pieces, houses being burned to the ground, and the stealing of livestock and land. She and her husband made the difficult decision to leave before their village was destroyed, leaving most of their belongings behind. When I asked her if she plans on ever going back she looked past me and said, “DRC will never have peace – if there’s no war today, there’s war tomorrow.” An echo of what I have heard from the countless Congolese refugees.  

    Although the hope for peace in DRC is small, the hope for peace is what has kept the will to rebuild a new life alive. Gloria says she’s heard that in Uganda’s Kyangwali Refugee Settlement she will get the opportunity to restart her life in peace where there are services available to support her like CARE’s Women and Girls Center, a safe space where women can access health services, including support for survivors of gender-based violence, among other things. But most importantly all she really wants now is peace. 

    *Name has been changed 

    By
    Ruwani Dharmakirthi

    Gloria* is 18 years old and fled from her village in Ituri province in the DRC along with her husband and 2-year-old daughter. They now live in Uganda’s Kyangwali Refugee Settlement. *Name changed. Photo credit: Thomas Markert/CARE

    Donate


    0 0

    Funding Gaps Threaten Critical Aid for Refugees in Uganda, Says CARE and 25 Other Ngos

    Posted
    6/28/18

    June 28, 2018 -- Uganda hosts the largest number of refugees in Africa, and is among the top refugee-hosting countries globally. Every day, more people, mostly women and children, continue to arrive in search of safety. The Government of Uganda has shown tremendous generosity in opening its borders to so many vulnerable refugees and granting them access to land and services, freedom of movement and the right to work.

    However, the international community has not stepped up to share this responsibility, despite commitments made in the 2016 New York Declaration and the subsequent Global Compact for Refugees. Halfway through the year, Uganda’s 2018 Integrated Refugee Response Plan (RRP) is only 6% funded and faces a critical shortfall. Where funding has been made available, it is largely short-term, covering 3-6 months and unsuitable for the chronic long-term needs of vulnerable refugees.

    Our organizations, working to support Uganda’s comprehensive response, see the impact of this funding gap every day. The ongoing influx means services are seriously overstretched. Many refugees have no access to vital primary health care, and health centers are short of beds, medicine and staff. Access to water in some areas is just 60% of the recommended minimum standards, meaning refugees are going without adequate sanitation and safe water. Some refugees have to sleep overnight at tap stands in order to get water. This is putting lives at risk, as evidenced by the recent cholera outbreak in southwest Uganda which killed at least 49 people. After great effort, the outbreak has only recently been brought under control, but could flare up again at any moment.

    Having to walk several kilometers to access services means women and children are exposed to numerous risks. There are widespread reports of sexual violence against young children and women in and around settlements, yet the availability and quality of services are inadequate, which is also leading to under-reporting by survivors. For example, in Kyangwali settlement, just 1% of SGBV survivors receive health services. In addition, thousands of unaccompanied children are particularly vulnerable to abuse and exploitation, and without increased investment in protection services, their vulnerability will only increase. Many new arrivals show signs of severe psychological distress and trauma after their experiences, yet mental health and psychosocial support services are scarce.

    Some 59% of refugee children in Uganda – around 300,000 children – are not receiving an education. Dozens of school structures that were constructed as temporary learning spaces are now on the verge of collapse, and there are no funds for repairs. Newly built learning centers for new arrivals remain closed as there are no funds to open them. Meanwhile many teachers’ salaries will soon run out, before the most critical time of the school year when exams must be sat. Girls are dropping out of school or failing to enroll, and as a result some are reverting to transactional sex or are married off early, and often forcefully, by their caregivers to make ends meet.

    Some settlements, such as Kyaka II and Kyangwali, have doubled in size in recent months and the land and natural resources available for new refugees are rapidly shrinking, increasing the risk of inter-personal conflict within the settlements. In order to host new arrivals, existing refugees are being required to give away land they have depended on for cultivation, but have not been provided with alternatives to compensate them for the loss of food or income. Greater investment in diverse, dignified and durable livelihood options is needed if new refugees are to become self-reliant.

    Given these huge needs and within a context of an already severely underfunded refugee response, we are extremely concerned by the allegations of fraud and corruption and fully support the donor community’s demands for greater accountability. In response to these allegations, in February UNCHR with the Government of Uganda launched the largest biometric refugee verification exercise worldwide. The exercise is now well underway, alongside implementation of other concrete steps, such as independent monitoring and improved reporting and referral systems, to ensure more transparent management of funds and aid in kind.

    While verification goes on, it is clear the needs remain enormous and urgent. Refugees and their host communities cannot wait for assistance any longer. We urge the donor community to not only continue but urgently step up its contribution to the refugee response, to reflect the level of need.

    We are extremely concerned that the funding gap is not only preventing effective service delivery and leading to a deterioration in welfare of existing refugees, but is also leaving Uganda seriously under-prepared for a major new refugee influx. More than 110,000 new refugees have already arrived in Uganda this year, at an average rate of 767 people every day. The lack of funding and short-term nature of available funds mean the humanitarian community was unable to prepare effectively for this influx. Another quarter of a million people are expected by the end of the year, but any further escalation of violence or deterioration in food security in South Sudan or DRC could send this number spiraling. This time, donors must invest to ensure Uganda is better prepared to manage this ever-increasing number of refugees.

    NGOs are already contributing significant financial and human resources, but we can only contribute so much. We urge donors to ensure that – while progress on the Joint Accountability Framework is monitored – the Refugee Response Plan is funded to reflect the scale of need, and that, in the light and spirit of the CRRF, longer-term multi-year predictable funding is provided.

    Signed by 26 international organizations:
    Action Against Hunger
    CARE
    CESVI
    Catholic Relief Services
    DCA
    Danish Refugee Council
    Finn Church Aid
    Finnish Refugee Council
    Humanity & Inclusion Cooperation
    IJM
    International Rescue Committee
    IRRI 
    The Johanniter International Assistance
    The Lutheran World Federation
    Mercy Corps
    Medical Teams International
    Norwegian Refugee Council
    Oxfam
    Plan International
    Save the Children
    War Child Holland
    Welt Hunger Hilfe
    World Vision
    ZOA

     

    About CARE
    Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside women and girls because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. That’s why women and girls are at the heart of CARE’s community-based efforts to improve education and health, create economic opportunity, respond to emergencies and confront hunger. Last year CARE worked in 93 countries and reached more than 63 million people around the world. Learn more at care.org.

    Media Contact
    Brian Feagans, bfeagans@care.org; 404-979-9453

    A young girl returns to her temporary family shelter after eating lunch at the transit center in the Imvepi refugee settlement in northwestern Uganda. International development organizations, including CARE, fear funding gaps will threaten aid for refugees like her. (Edward Echwalu/CARE)

    Tagged: 

    0 0

    D. R. Congo: One of the World’s Forgotten Humanitarian Crises in Urgent Need of International Attention

    Posted
    8/7/18

    A surge in violent conflict and inter-communal tensions has forced more than 781,000 Congolese, many of them women and children, to flee their homes since 2017. The situation continues to deteriorate dramatically as escalating violence, particularly in the country’s eastern region, is causing an exodus in neighboring countries. “Unfortunately, the situation is worsening day by day and the Congolese refugees are now among the ten largest refugee populations of the world. D.R Congo and the affected neighboring countries need international assistance more than ever before. The current response is severely overstretched and underfunded”, says Delphine Pinault, CARE’s country director in Uganda. “We urgently need funding to continue supporting the Congolese refugees as another spike in influx is expected in the end of 2018.”

    Uganda is now hosting the largest number of refugees and asylum seekers from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), as of July 18, 2018 the number is 288,766 in total. Women and children make up to 82 percent of the population. Lack of food is severe and there is an urgent need to protect women and children from gender-based violence incidents.


    “People who arrive report severe incidents of sexual abuse and violence,” says Pinault. The lack of safe spaces and shelter, especially for women and children who are already traumatized, needs to be prioritized.”

    The situation is also very critical in Zambia, now hosting more than 42,000 Congolese refugees. New arrivals there are putting additional pressure on the local population who is suffering from an already dire economic situation. Some families have to walk long distances to fetch water and to collect donated food. 

    In May 2018, UNHCR has updated the response plan for the DRC Regional Response Strategy for 2018 and revised the expected number of new refugees in Uganda to 150,000 up to 300,000 as contingency. Despite the difficulties and the unprecedented number of refugees in Uganda and Zambia, the two countries keep their doors open, but the situation is deteriorating for everyone. The risk of more Congolese fleeing their country remains high, with a disastrous impact on the precarious humanitarian situation in both the DRC and neighboring countries.

    CARE has been working in DRC since 1994, initially responding to a refugee crisis following the Rwandan genocide. Currently our teams in Uganda and Zambia, prioritizing the most vulnerable, are providing assistance through distribution of hygiene items, such as pads and underwear to women. In addition, aiming to protect sexual violence survivors, CARE is creating safe spaces for women, pregnant women and children; and is offering psychological support and counseling on sexual and reproductive health, basic sanitation and hygiene. So far we have reached more than 14,000 people. Our teams in Uganda and Zambia will continue to monitor the situation closely and assess the needs of those affected and especially of women and girls, as conditions are expected to deteriorate further in the coming weeks. In Zambia we are also leading the shelter and infrastructure group, having built 2,700 shelters, and are building a refugee reception center, a distribution center, and a center for survivors of sexual and gender-based violence.

     

    About CARE:

    Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside women and girls because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. That’s why women and girls are at the heart of CARE’s community-based efforts to improve education and health, create economic opportunity, respond to emergencies and confront hunger. Last year CARE worked in 93 countries and reached more than 63 million people around the world. Learn more at care.org.

     

    Media contact:

    Mahmoud Shabeeb, mshabeeb@care.org, +962-79-146-39-03, Skype: mahmoud.shabeeb_1 (based in Amman, Jordan)

    Nicole Harris, nharris@care.org, 404-735-0871

    Lisy (26) fled her home in DRC with her two daughters, Rose (6) and Kelly (3), to Uganda, and are struggling to meet their basic needs. Despite the difficulties and the unprecedented number of refugees in Uganda and Zambia, the two countries keep their doors open, but the situation is deteriorating for everyone. Photo: Thomas Markert/CARE

    Donate


    0 0

    The refugee fighting sexual violence

    Posted
    8/29/18

    Earlier this year, tens of thousands of Congolese risked their lives to flee their conflict-ridden country and seek refuge in Uganda. Pema* is one of them. At the time, fighting was raging in Ituri, her home province, in the Democratic Republic of Congo.  

    “Our village was attacked during the night. After they raped me, rebels stole our herd, and kidnapped my husband and my eldest child. I haven’t from them since. I think about my son all the time. I miss him so much,” she says. 

    After experiencing rape, displacement and violence, she’s now trying to rebuild her life together with her 10 children in Uganda’s Kyangwali refugee settlement. Eager to help people with similar trauma, she became a volunteer with CARE. She educates women and girls about sexual and gender-based violence and early marriage, of which she is a survivor.  

    “I can help them because I experienced it myself. I don’t want it to happen to others.”  

    Pema became pregnant from rape at 14. Due to family pressure, she was forced to get married to her rapist and, in the years that followed, was forcibly impregnated with 10 more children. Because of her young age, her pregnancies led to life-threatening complications. 

    “During my last pregnancy, I almost died,” she says. “After I gave birth to my twins, I remained unconscious for two days. Doctors told me that I would not survive any following pregnancies and, thankfully, convinced my husband to sign the papers for my sterilization.” 

    Today, Pema meets with women and girls in the camp to inform them about their rights and existing solutions in case of rape and assault. She’s among 40 other volunteers that play a crucial in identifying sexual and gender-based violence in their communities.  

    “What I’m doing with CARE is very important for me,” Pema says. “I’m very happy to do it, because nobody should suffer like I did. I hope I can contribute to making a difference.” 

     

    Pema was raped and married by age 14. She’s working to keep the same thing from happening to other women and girls. Photo credit: Camille Nozieres/CARE

    Donate


older | 1 | (Page 2) | 3 | newer