Uganda + 5 more

Inter-Agency Uganda Country Refugee Response Plan ( UCRRP) 2022-2025


Executive Summary

The Uganda Country Refugee Response Plan (UCRRP) provides a framework covering the period 2022-2025 and detailed planning for 2022-2023. It is a joint plan between the Office of the Prime Minister, UNHCR and UN Agencies, international and national partners. The UCRRP aims to respond to challenges in a holistic, comprehensive, and integrated manner to achieve its strategic objectives: maintain asylum space, provide life-saving assistance, improve access to public services, strengthen co-existence and self-reliance, and pursue durable solutions.

Uganda continues to be Africa’s largest refugee hosting country with over 1.5 million refugees from South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Somalia, Rwanda, Burundi, and other countries, located across thirteen districts. About 94 percent of refugees live in settlements alongside host communities, in areas which are among the poorest and most underdeveloped in the country. The presence of refugees has exacerbated underlying development challenges and shortcomings in these regions, where the Ugandan population faces its own economic, environmental and development challenges that also continue to require support.

Uganda has a progressive refugee policy anchored in the 2006 Refugee Act and the 2010 Refugee Regulations. This legal framework allows refugees freedom of movement, the rights to work, establish a business, own property, and access national services, including primary and secondary education and health care. Despite the border closures due to COVID-19, asylum-seekers continue to arrive in Uganda, including a larger influx of 11,000 from DRC in November 2021 during a temporary opening of border crossing points.

Uganda has long been a global leader in its approach to peaceful co-existence and local settlement of refugees with the host communities. Refugees and host communities use the same health centers, and the children attend the same schools. In dedicated refugee settlements, refugees are provided with plots of land for housing and cultivation.

Thanks to donor contributions and the efforts of humanitarian, government, and development partners, along with the exceptional hospitality of the Ugandan com-munities, UCRRP has brought vital and substantial sup-port across all sectors and to all regions. Achievements include, 87 per cent of children enrolled in primary education, 14 per cent in secondary education’ and 477,000 children benefited from remote learning during school closures.' Refugees have greater flexibility and options with a slight majority, 55 per cent, of them receiving unrestricted cash transfers to purchase food compared with 45 per cent receiving in-kind commodities. To support children at risk, a total of 300 Child Protection Committees of over 1,700 community members are supporting case identification, monitoring, and raising awareness in settlements. Survivors from 4,066 GBV incidents were provided with appropriate multi-sectoral support, ranging from psycho-social support and medical services to legal assistance and livelihood support." Maternal deaths among the host community and refugees reduced by 20 per cent with the Institutional Maternal Mortality Rate (IMMR) decreasing from 59 deaths per 100,000 deliveries in 2018 to 42 death per 100,000 deliveries in facilities located in refugee-hosting districts in 2020. Multipurpose cash amounting to almost 12bn UGX was provided to more than 29,000 urban refugee households in 2020 and more than 30,000 urban refugee households in 2021 to alleviate/mitigate impacts of COVID-19 during the pandemic to refugees who otherwise are not eligible for assistance.

Whilst being mainly a humanitarian plan, the UCRRP also includes an important transition component aiming at a sustainable refugee response in Uganda. As the emergency stabilizes, these efforts allow refugees to access national services pursuant to Ugandan law, whilst ensuring that the national social service systems are sup-ported to absorb the refugees. As such, this plan con-tributes to shared government and partner agency commitments to achieve the goals of the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) and its Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF), alongside interventions carried out by government institutions within the frame-work of the National Development Plan (2020/21 - 2024/25), which provides for inclusion of refugees in development planning and in statistics. As a result, for example 76 per cent of health facilities in refugee-hosting districts are accredited by the Ministry of Health and 66 per cent of designs for water schemes have been reviewed, optimized, and approved by the Ministry of Water & Environment to date. Furthermore, the next District Development Plans in refugee-hosting Districts will integrate refugee and host community needs and thereby provide a holistic overview of needs in these Districts.

The priorities of the UCRRP are to maintain the current asylum policy; increase access to livelihood activities, in particular in sustainable agriculture and whenever possible through joint ventures of host and refugee communities; increase the focus on environment-related initiatives, notably tree planting and reforestation; ensure quality education despite the pandemic by putting sufficient infrastructure in place, including temporary structures, and a double-shift system in a timely manner wherever required; continue to integrate basic services to refugees into government systems and enhance the capacity of the Government to ensure successful integration, including through development actors; enhance preparedness in case of a large influx from neighboring countries; ensure refugee-hosting and refugee-impacted districts benefit from investments by development actors; continue to support strong coordination with/between OPM and line ministries, notably Local Government; and ensure all activities benefit primarily the most vulnerable, through targeted assistance, including cash-based, and improved outreach activities including in the education and health sectors.

The UCRRP will adapt to learning and to changes in con-text. This appeal is developed based on a bi-annual review of needs.