Uganda

Uganda Refugee Response Monitoring: Settlement Fact Sheet: Mirieyi (June 2018)

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Mirieyi was established on 01 January 1994 in the subcounty of Ofua in Adjumani district. It has a surface area of 44 hectares and it hosts over 5,000 refugees. The settlement hosts refugees from South Sudan who fled prior to their country gaining independence in 2011 and those fleeing the war since 2013. Projects implemented originally focused on humanitarian assistance, there is however an urgent need to implement development projects to enhance refugees' self-reliance and sustainability.

Gaps & Challenges

With health centers located far from the refugees and no ambulance services refugees are forced to walk long distances to access treatment. The limited number of health facilities means the health centre is overcrowded and the waiting time is particularly long.

Refugees and nationals reported the health facilities are also inadequately equipped leading to poor diagnosis and thus inappropriate treatments. Adding to this, the health center has an insufficient supply of medication forcing refugees to buy their drugs in private clinics, which many cannot afford.

Children lack access to quality education due to high congestion in classes and language barriers between the students and the teachers. Post-primary students have limited opportunities to further their education caused by the lack of secondary schools in the settlement and the limited access to scholarships. Moreover, the absence of vocational institutions further limits their opportunities with refugees reporting the youth are left idle.

Limited land accessible in the settlement for agricultural purposes prevents refugees from earning a livelihood. Moreover, there are few income-generating activities available, for both the host community and the refugee population, aggravated by the lack of vocational trainings and support with access to capital.

The food distributed is often delayed, refugees reported that they can go several months without receiving their food rations.

Moreover, due to delays in biometric registration to the food roster many do not receive their rations. Refugees also stated the quantity supplied is insufficient to last until the next distribution. The lack of land accessible for cultivation hinders them from having an alternative to the food distributed forcing many to reduce their daily food consumption.

Increasing cases of household theft across the settlement and insecurity at night has led to protection issues in the refugee community.

The police station is located far away, making it more difficult to report incidents and further impacting the safety in the settlement.

There has been a delay in replacing the non-food items (NFIs) received upon arrival. Refugees thus use worn out items such as saucepans, mosquito nets, blankets, jerry cans and cups. In order to attain NFIs, FGD participants reoprted that refugees tend to offer casual labor in the host communities or sharing their NFI with their neighbors and relatives.

Strengths & Opportunities

The conducive and peaceful relationship between nationals and the host community has led them to share land as well as other livelihoods opportunities. Both communities cultivate together as well as share the proceeds following the harvest. Furthermore, nationals are able to rent land to the refugees, which has also increased their income. Both refugees and the host community have improved their self-reliance as a result of their relationship.