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Flash Update #5 on Monsoon Response of 18 August 2021, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh

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Between 27 July and 18 August 2021, Cox’s Bazar has experienced around 1,048 mm of rainfall -- over 700 mm just between 27 July and 3 August, and 127 cm over the past 48 hours (16-17 August) alone. Heavy rains are expected to continue in the week ahead.

83,407 refugees affected

25,342 refugees displaced

10 refugee fatalities (5 due to landslides, 2 due to drowning, 1 due to an accident in a well, 2 reported deaths pending confirmation)

IMMEDIATE RESPONSE

Site Management and Site Development. 463 monsoon-related incidents – largely windstorms, slope failures and flooding -- have been recorded in the camps. Repairs of 1,500 metres of stairs, 185 metres of bridges, 2,313 metres of roads and pathways and 973 metres of drainage have been completed and 7,512 square metres of slopes have been stabilized.

Shelter/Non-Food Items: Of the 10,274 damaged shelters, 8,077 were assisted with emergency shelter kits while 2,197 households were not eligible for the assistance. 75% of the shelters were damaged due to windstorm and the rest were impacted by landslides and flooding. Refugees are provided with bamboo, tarpaulins, rope, jute bags to help with repairs.

Health: All health facilities in the camps remain operational. Despite the heavy rains, the COVID-19 vaccination campaign for Rohingya refugees continues unabated with more than 30,000 refugees 55 years and over, vaccinated.

Food: 5,774 households received fortified biscuits, 142,053 cooked meals have been distributed, and 125 households benefitted from a one off-distribution of dry food rations in 31 camps. Following multiple distributions of cooked meals complemented by dry snacks and fortified biscuits in the host communities, there are no further requests from the authorities for food assistance in the government evacuation centres. Meanwhile a rapid assessment covering food security needs among 1,062 Rohingya refugee households and 375 host community families impacted by monsoons is complete. Data analysis is currently ongoing.

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH): Over 4,547 latrines, 1,548 bathing cubicles, 772 tube wells and 202 tap stands have been damaged or contaminated, and 31 Faecal Sludge Treatment Plants have been affected in the camps by the monsoons. Immediate repairs have been carried out on 2,879 latrines, 950 bathing spaces, 47 piped water network, 573 tube wells and 100 tap stands, 21 Faecal Sludge Treatment Plant sites and five Solid Waste Management sites. In the camps, 2,854,285 Aqua Tabs have been distributed to complement available chlorinated water networks. 43,979 Rohingya refugee households have received bathing and laundry soap and 9,089 households were provided water containers. Hygiene promotion activities are ongoing in both Rohingya refugee camps and the host communities. Assessments are underway together with the Department of Public Health Engineering (DPHE) to identify facilities in the host communities damaged by the monsoons.

Protection including Child Protection and Gender-Based Violence (GBV): Community outreach teams have reached 6,493 individuals through home visits to ensure that vulnerable refugees receive protection services and can access emergency assistance. Protection Emergency Response (PERU) teams reached 6,335 individuals, including women, children, and persons with disabilities, with emergency protection services. 4,433 dignity kits and 4,455 items such as menstrual hygiene management kits, sanitary napkins and hygiene packages were provided to women and girls in the camps. 3,531 awareness-raising sessions, both remotely and in-person, have reached 9,633 people including women and girls. 972 individuals, mainly women, were referred to specialized services such as mental health and psycho-social support, safe shelter and case management related to incidents of gender-based violence. Meanwhile repairs on monsoon damaged child protection facilities are complete. Over 16,500 girls, boys and caregivers have been reached by awareness raising on risks related to the monsoons. 4,272 children were reached through mental health and psycho-social support and 506 girls and boys assisted through child protection case management.

Communication with Communities: Over 30,000 Rohingya refugees were reached on monsoon-related awareness raising through audio/video messages, miking, community mobilization through religious leaders and other networks. The focus of Rohingya refugee volunteers remains on community mobilization around the COVID-19 vaccination programme.

Education: Rohingya refugee families are no longer sheltering in the learning centres. They have returned home or are staying with neighbours and family members. Repair of 96 of the 421 damaged learning centres is underway.

Logistics: 7,047 kgs of aid items have been transported as part of the monsoon response in the camps. Physical access constraints continue to be updated in Logistics Information Exchange (LOG IE). Storage space is available at Madhuchara and Teknaf Logistics Hubs, as well as a contingency stock of equipment such as generators, mobile storage units, prefabs, and ablution units.

Gender in Humanitarian Action: Distribution of 1,800 dignity kits has commenced in five camps. 24 Rohingya refugee women and men are working with agencies to ensure gender quality in the WASH response including the distribution of hygiene kits. 209 women and girls in the host communities received awareness raising on monsoon preparedness among other issues.