Period covered by this Ops update: 15 November to 7 February 2013
Appeal target (current): CHF 717,077
Appeal coverage: 30%;
• An Emergency Appeal was launched on 24 January 2013 for CHF 717,077 to support the Burundi Red Cross (BRC) to assist 20,194 beneficiaries (3,366 households) for 12 months.
• A Preliminary Emergency Appeal was launched on 15 November 2012 with a budget of CHF 674,731 (cash and in kind donation or services) to assist 14,643 beneficiaries (2,615 households) for a period of three months.
• CHF 100,000 was initially allocated from the IFRC’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) on 15 November, 2012 to help in starting up operations as returnees streamed into Burundi from Tanzania’s Mtabila camp.
• This update informs on progress in relief, restoring family links, water and sanitation and emergency health
Summary: By end 2012, the Tanzanian Government closed Mtabila refugee camp and revoked the refugee status for the majority of the Burundian refugees living there. Almost 34,000 Burundian refugees were repatriated, returning nearly 20 years later to a very different environment, without homes or livelihoods.
This emergency operation sets out to provide assistance to the returnees as they seek to fully integrate with their host communities through interventions in relief, water and sanitation, health and hygiene promotion, epidemic monitoring and restoration of family links. Target beneficiaries include returnees going back to Nyanza Lac, Makamba, Kibago, Kayogoro, Mabanda, Rumonge, and Giharod.
Progress is ongoing. In addressing the most urgent needs, BRC, in coordination with UNHCR and a national human rights association is conducting assessments to establish the needs of returnees in their host communities. In Cibitoke, BRC is providing food and non food items to 800 Congolese and Burundians refugees. Volunteers and Emergency Brigade Teams are facilitating the reception and registration of refugees in coordination with UNHCR and government as well as assisting in setting up temporary shelters. Volunteers have collected and distributed 3 tonnes of food to the most vulnerable. BRC volunteers have also provided support in distribution of assistance from other humanitarian actors.
Through Restoration of Family Links activities, a total of 169 separated returnees and especially minors have been reunited. In Cibitoke province, 3 families were reunited with their children who were traced in Rwanda.
BRC has set up 6 First Aid stations at entry points not covered by other humanitarian actors and is providing First Aid assistance. BRC has also provided assistance to a total of 116 voluntary returnees and 215 deported returnees in various entry points of the Burundian borders. A total of 10 entry points in Makamba, Rutana and Ruyigi provinces have been monitored.
Millions of litres of safe water have been provided in the 3 transit camps using 6 bladder tanks. Additionally, in Makamba, 3 bladder platforms of 10,000 litres have been built and a total of 1,525,000 litres of water provided through water trucking while in Cibitoke 2 bladders platforms have been built and 1,525,000 litres of water provided through water trucking.
Psychosocial support has been provided to 16 children in Cibitoke and one First Aid Station set up. All these activities were carried out by BRC during returnees transit to their new homes. Further support will be provided in responding to the returnees longer term needs in order to ensure that the returnees fully integrate within the host communities and resource based conflicts are managed.
Response will soon be constrained by lack of resources. Funding has so far been received by British, Finnish, Japanese, Norwegian and Monaco Red Cross Societies. The Burundi Red Cross is grateful for this generous assistance and urges donors to continue to fund this important operation.