(New York, 5 August 2015) United Nations humanitarian chief Stephen O’Brien today released US$70 million from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for chronically underfunded aid operations to help millions of people forced from their homes by violence and instability.
“With almost 60 million people forcibly displaced around the world, we face a crisis on a scale not seen in generations,” said Stephen O’Brien, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator. “These funds from CERF’s Underfunded Emergencies window will help sustain life-saving relief in some of the world’s most protracted and chronically under-funded emergencies.”
Some US$21 million from the CERF allocation will allow humanitarian partners in Sudan and Chad to sustain basic services and protection activities for millions of people from Sudan’s Darfur region where the crisis has entered its thirteenth year.
In the Horn of Africa – home to some of the most vulnerable communities facing recurrent cycles of conflict and climatic shocks – humanitarian agencies in Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia will receive $33 million. In Somalia, over 730,000 people continue to require emergency food and nutrition assistance, a dire situation now further compounded by the needs of people fleeing conflict in Yemen.
US$8 million will help relief agencies provide assistance, including emergency shelter and improved access to healthcare, for neglected communities and displaced people in Myanmar and Bangladesh. Another $8 million will help sustain humanitarian operations in Afghanistan, where a lack of adequate funding has forced relief agencies to reduce their operations at a time when needs are increasing because of intensified fighting.
This second round brings the total allocations from the CERF’s Underfunded Emergencies window in 2015 to $168.5 million.
“These CERF grants are a last resort for aid operations and represent a life-line for some of world’s most vulnerable populations,” said USG O’Brien. “But the urgent needs of millions of children, women and men continue to increase and funding shortfalls deny them the aid, protection and dignity they deserve, no less than the rest of us. I urge donors to support relief efforts in these protracted and all but forgotten crises. Additional funding sources continue to be urgently needed, which we can immediately cash in to programmes with trusted partners to deliver on the ground – now!”
CERF pools donor contributions into a single fund so money is available to start or continue urgent relief work anywhere in the world. Since its inception in 2006, 125 UN Member States and dozens of private-sector donors and regional governments have contributed to the Fund. Since 2006, CERF has allocated more than US$4.1 billion to support humanitarian operations in 95 countries and territories.
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.