The Government and the people of Japan have renewed their commitment to refugees and displaced families in Somalia through a USD 4.5 million grant to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Japan’s latest contribution will enable UNHCR to step up its humanitarian efforts and deliver services to a total of 32,460 people including refugees, asylum seekers, returnees, internally displaced people (IDPs) and vulnerable host community households. The funds come at a critical time as Somalia battles with a new wave of coronavirus infections that is threatening to further strain the socioeconomic gains made in the country. Somalia is also experiencing severe water shortages and is still reeling from the effects of last year’s widespread flooding and Cyclone Gati.
UNHCR will work with a network of local and international partners in rolling out several interventions to support vulnerable communities that have lost their livelihoods during the pandemic, as well to build the capacity of government agencies in curbing the spread of COVID-19. At least 15 schools will be rehabilitated and fitted with handwashing water points across the country. Some 4,000 school children will also gain access to quality education, while 1,000 people - mainly women and youth, are set to benefit from income generating activities. In addition, UNHCR will reach thousands of people with prevention and response initiatives to gender-based violence.
“This generous funding from the Government of Japan is very timely. The humanitarian situation in Somalia - already at crisis levels before the pandemic, has become even more complex. Somalia has one of the world’s largest populations of IDPs globally, estimated at 2.9 million people and is also home to over 24,000 refugees and asylum seekers. This contribution will help to strengthen our ongoing efforts in the fight against COVID-19 and will alleviate the suffering of the most vulnerable families. We are extremely grateful for this latest funding that reaffirms Japan’s commitment to the forcibly displaced,” said UNHCR Somalia Representative, Johann Siffointe.
In the last five years, Japan has contributed over USD 22 million, enabling UNHCR to reach thousands of people in Somalia with lifesaving interventions including shelter, livelihood, education, health care and multi-purpose cash grants.
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