Humanitarian Situation in Chad - Weekly Bulletin, 05 Nov 2008

Situation Report
Originally published

- Insecurity causes deterioration of humanitarian situation in east's Dogdoré area

- School year starts in the Dar Sila region of eastern Chad

- WFP to start emergency school-feeding activities for IDP children in eastern Chad

- General food distributions for October completed in 11 out of 12 refugee camps

- Food security survey underway in eastern Chad, expected to form basis for 2009 food aid strategy

- Armed elements reported in and around camps and sites, compromising civilian characters of locations

- "Global hand-washing day" celebrated in six IDP sites of eastern Chad

Political and security context, and implications for humanitarian access

- Worsened insecurity during October has caused a deterioration of the humanitarian situation in the area of Dogdoré in eastern Chad, approximately 30 kilometres west of the border with the Sudan's Darfur region. This has affected over 26,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) as well as members of local host communities. Humanitarian operations have been suspended in the area, with the exception of highly urgent actions such as responses to medical emergencies and the provision of drinking water. The suspension affects, among other activities, the provision of health services, the supply of clean water, and the delivery of nutritional supplements to the most vulnerable.

Humanitarian situation

Needs and response by sector


- In the Dar Sila region of eastern Chad, the school year has started in refugee camps and IDP sites. In most locations, community teachers are being employed, and the community has taken an active interest in school activities. School materials provided by the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) are being distributed. On the other hand, in most schools among the host communities, teachers are not yet in place.

- Preparations are currently underway, for WFP to start emergency school feeding activities for the school year 2008/2009 in eastern Chad, which is expected to lead to an improvement in school enrolment and attendance, while at the same time improving the nutrition of children. The operation targets approximately 32,000 IDP children, and will be implemented by the NGO Feed The Children.

Food Aid

- General food distributions for the month of October have been completed in 11 out of the 12 refugee camps of eastern Chad. A total of 3,914 metric tonnes (MT) of food commodities were provided to 228,700 beneficiaries in 11 refugee camps. Distributions in the Amnaback camp have not yet started, due to the hostile environment caused by a recent controversy between refugees and aid workers over a registration exercise.

- A vulnerability assessment mapping (VAM) survey has started on 20 October and is ongoing, under the leadership of the Chadian Ministry of Agriculture. The survey covers camps and IDP sites in eastern Chad, and its results will determine the food distribution strategy for 2009. Due to increasing tensions between refugees and aid workers, the survey has not been conducted in the Amnaback refugee camp.

- Following requests by Médecins Sans Frontiéres - Holland (MSF-H) and Oxfam Great Britain (Oxfam GB) to continue food distributions to all IDPs until the results of the VAM survey are known, the World Food Programme (WFP) has organised general food distributions in the Gassiré and Kerfi IDP sites, in response to a reported nutritional situation whereby IDPs are still very vulnerable in those locations.


- On 23 October, UNFPA provided medical supplies and equipment, as well as ambulances, to local authorities, for use in the regions of Ouaddaï and Wadi Fira.

- In Kerfi, local health authorities with the support of the NGO Cooperazione Internazionale (COOPI) have carried out an evaluation mission, in response to reports about a possible increase in the cases of pertussis. The reports have not been confirmed.

- The UNICEF and its partners have introduced the use of the "Pentavalent vaccine" (which provides coverage for diphtheria, hepatitis B, hæmophilic influenza, tetanus, and pertussis) in IDP sites in the Dar Sila department.


- Since the beginning of October specialized services for the prevention of mother to child transmission and the treatment of HIV-positive mothers are operational with UNICEF-support in the Ouaddai region. They are open to refugees, IDPs and host communities,


- Between 16 and 29 October, the United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) transported a total of 819 passengers between Abéché and other locations in eastern Chad, and 1,169 passengers between the Chadian capital N'Djamena, Abéché, and locations in Cameroon. A total of 6,184 KG of light cargo was also transported during this period.


- At the beginning of September, UNICEF and the NGO Action Contre la Faim (ACF) launched a global nutrition survey covering all IDP sites and surrounding host communities, including Kerfi. Final results of the survey will be available by the end of November.


- Concerns remain high, about the presence of armed elements in and around refugee camps and IDP sites, which compromises the civilian character of these camps and sites. In the last two weeks, movements by armed opposition groups have been reported in several areas of eastern Chad. These groups reportedly include the Chadian National Army, as well as the Sudan's armed opposition group Justice and Equality Movement (JEM).

- A workshop took place in Chad's eastern town of Abéché on 23 October, under the auspices of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), on aid strategies for victims of gender-based violence (GBV). A total of 43 people attended, comprising staff from the United Nations and NGOs.

- Over the last two weeks, the "Marabout" project, organized by the NGO Christian Children's Fund (CCF) in partnership with UNFPA, visited 900 households among refugees in the Am Nabak, Iridimi, and Touloum camps. A total of 60 persons in each camp worked for this endeavour. The objective of the home visits was to spread awareness among refugees on GBV, including female genital mutilation (FGM), domestic violence, early marriages, and rape.

Water and sanitation

- On 15 October, the "Global Hand-washing Day" was celebrated in six IDP sites around Goz Beïda and Koukou-Angara, targeting 85,000 IDPs, with the aim to raise awareness on hygiene. Schools and Therapeutic Feeding Centers were the main venues.

- Oxfam GB and UNICEF have delivered 16,816 bowls of soap in the IDP sites of Gassiré, Gourounkoun, Koloma, and Koubigou, thereby providing two bowls per person in those locations.

- The school water point of Loboutigué has been treated by UNICEF on 24 October, and is now operational.

- The NGO ACTED has opened an office in Goz Beïda, in order to support water and sanitation activities in the area. The organization is so far operational in the IDP sites of Ganachour and Sanour.

- The NGO CARE is currently establishing activities in the Assoungha department, and Islamic Relief is deploying to the area of Haouich, in both cases with a focus on the implementation of activities in the water and sanitation domain.

This bulletin has been prepared thanks to information from United Nations agencies and other humanitarian organizations in Chad, including the sub-field offices of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Abéché, Farchana, Goz Beïda, and Koukou.

For further information, please contact:

Maurizio Giuliano, Public Information Officer, United Nations, N'Djamena: Tel. +235-6053892, email

Katy Thiam, Information Officer, United Nations, Abéché: Tel. +23- 6201542, e-mail

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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