The United Nations has released $100 million, through the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for aid operations in nine severely underfunded emergencies.
A statement by the UN office in Tanzania has said that $11 million of the $100 million has been allocated to respond to the urgent needs of refugees fleeing Burundi.
More than 126,000 Burundians have sought refuge in Tanzania since April 2015 as a result of political unrest in Burundi.
“With 64,000 DRC refugees already in the country, Tanzania is now home to over 193,000 refugees. At the weekly arrival rate of 1,500 individuals, it is anticipated that the refugee population may increase to 230,000 by the end of 2016. This situation poses significant challenges in providing adequate assistance and protection to refugees,” said the statement.
CERF will provide humanitarian assistance to the refugees residing in Nyarugusu, Nduta and Mtendeli refugee camps in Kigoma Region, in northwestern Tanzania, as well as funding to host communities in urgent need of clean water, adequate sanitation, health care, food and shelter.
Part of the funding will be used to address the ongoing cholera outbreak that has severely affected 19 regions in the country. Refugees will be provided with protection and essential services.
“This CERF allocation will help sustain lifesaving relief in emergencies where the needs of the most vulnerable communities are alarmingly high while the available resources for response remain critically low.” said UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in a statement.
“UNHCR welcomes the generous contribution from the CERF, which comes at a most opportune moment. The operation faced significant funding shortfalls in 2015 that affected our collective response capacity in 2015. We hope that this is the first sign of a more robust funding response in 2016,” said UNHCR representative in Tanzania, Joyce Mends-Cole.
Since 2006, 125 UN member states and observers, private-sector donors and regional governments have supported the Central Emergency Response Fund. Since then, CERF has allocated almost $4.2 billion for humanitarian operations in 94 countries and territories.
The biggest contributors to CERF are the UK, Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands and Canada.