Sudan + 1 more

Sudan: CAFOD director highlights worsening crisis

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CAFOD director Chris Bain has travelled to Darfur to see how your donations can help those affected by the spiralling humanitarian and security crisis in this region of Sudan

During a week long visit, Chris is visiting the camps to see for himself the life-saving work that CAFOD has been supporting as well as meeting with ACT/Caritas staff and with key UN officials from the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

More than 200,000 people have been killed and two million others driven from their homes since clashes first erupted between Sudanese government forces, allied militias and rebel groups.

Makeshift camps

The UN estimates that four million people now depend on humanitarian assistance.

Chris says: "Our staff on the ground tells us that the ongoing crisis is worsening. People who have been driven from their homes are still unable to return and millions of people face dire humanitarian conditions in sprawling makeshift camps.

"This is the greatest concentration of human suffering in the world and we need to carry on the vital work of keeping people alive through our health clinics, feeding centres and water and sanitation projects.

"We can't just walk away from the people we have been supporting for the last three years, more money is needed to keep these essential programmes running."

Crisis spreads into Chad

CAFOD is working as part of the ACT/Caritas network reaching some 325,000 people, but the Darfur crisis has spread across the region.

As a direct consequence of the conflict more than 225,000 refugees have crossed the border into eastern Chad, where they along with approximately 150,000 Chadian people forced from their homes by fighting, face insecurity from banditry, inter-ethnic violence and armed conflict.

Chris adds: "As this humanitarian tragedy escalates we need to raise more money to enable CAFOD to maintain and extend its current commitments to the people of Darfur.

"And in Chad to be able to respond with adequate shelter, clean water, proper sanitation, healthcare and basic household items such as cooking utensils, blankets and soap."

As women, children and men continue to face the risk of violence on a daily basis CAFOD is calling on the international community to put its weight behind securing inclusive dialogue in both Chad and Darfur.

Only dialogue will provide long-term peace and address the root causes of the conflict.

Please support the Darfur & Chad Emergency Appeal with whatever you can afford - it really will make a difference to thousands of people

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CAFOD donations hotline: 0500 85 88 85

For interview requests, photographs or further information, please contact Nana Anto-Awuakye on: 020 7095-5560 or 07799 477 541 or email: nanto-awuakye@cafod.org.uk