END OF YEAR SITREP: January – December 2017
2,561 severe acute malnourished (SAM) refugee children were admitted into SAM treatment programs with a cure rate of 85.4 per cent.
UNICEF supported WASH (handwashing, latrines and water points) in all camps covering 91,323 children both in schools and child friendly spaces.
With support from UNICEF, 34,468 refugee children under five were vaccinated against measles and 194,236 people with malaria were treated.
UNICEF supported 2,786 Burundian students to take their national exams for the milestone grades in both primary and secondary schools. In total 70,235 refugee children were supported by UNICEF.
UNICEF worked together with UNHCR and NGOs to strengthen procedures for the safe return of unaccompanied and separated children. 12,014 Burundian refugees (57 per cent children) were assisted to voluntarily repatriate to Burundi. Over 11,400 children benefitted from a combination of child friendly places as well as range of social welfare services.
SITUATION IN NUMBERS
315,144 # of refugees and asylum seekers; Burundians and Congolese in three camps (UNHCR, December 2017)
179,633 (57%) # of refugee children in need of humanitarian assistance (UNHCR, November 2017)
69,332 (22%) # of under 5 children living in the 3 refugee camps
12,014 # of refugees voluntarily returned to Burundi of the 38,526 registered.
Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs
Tanzania hosts the largest number of Burundian refugees in Africa, with over 264,000 refugees from this country, In total, Tanzania hosts 315,144 refugees from Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Fifty seven percent of the entire population are children under eighteen years and more than 5,000 children are unaccompanied and separated.
Refugees in Tanzania are hosted in three camps (Nyarugusu, Mtendeli and Nduta), all of which are overcrowded and there is an inadequate number of schools, shortage of water, and health and nutrition facilities are overstretched. Malaria is the leading cause of morbidity, accounting for 30 per cent of all Out-Patient Department (OPD) attendances.
There has been intermittent outbreaks of cholera throughout the year with 326 cumulative cases and 9 deaths outside of the camps in the 4 refugee hosting districts of Kigoma region, however no cases in the camps. General food distribution continued at a reduced ration for all commodities ranging between 50- 70 per cent of the full basket due shortages in the food pipeline. However, food rations and supplementary feeding programmes targeting vulnerable groups of people, including children under five, pregnant and lactating women and people at entry points, as well as people at transit and reception centers were not affected by this food ration reduction.
In 2017 Tanzania experienced new arrivals as well as repatriation of refugees at the same time. The number of new arrivals from Burundi decreased from a high of over 18,498 in January 2017 to zero in October through December, and this might be attributed to tighter border measures after the Prima Facie status was revoked in January 2017. However, during the last week of November a total of 1,893 asylum seekers were received into Tanzania were hosted in a transit center pending government screening and clearance. Only 987 were given refugee status and moved onward to camps in December. Since the commencement of voluntary repatriation in September 2017, over 12,014 refugees of the 38,526 registered have voluntarily returned to Burundi following the tripartite agreement between the governments of Tanzania, Burundi and UNHCR. See Graph A.
The socio-political situation in Burundi and DRC remains tense and unpredictable and cross –border influxes are expected to continue in 2018. Without counting new arrivals, the refugee population continues to grow with over 1,500 babies born each month in all three camps. As Tanzania has hosted refugees for over 50 years and new influxes continue, more effort is being made to strengthen national systems to provide basic services for refugees as well as focussing on development gaps in refugee hosting communities via the UN joint programme.