FUNDING REQUIRED $25.32B
FUNDING RECEIVED $10.63B
UNMET REQUIREMENTS COVERAGE $14.69B
PEOPLE IN NEED 133.8M
PEOPLE TO RECEIVE AID 97.4M
COUNTRIES AFFECTED 41
Spotlight on the recent disaster in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia
On Friday 28 September, a 7.4 magnitude earthquake and tsunami struck Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. On 5 October, the Government and country team/regional office issued the Central Sulawesi Earthquake Response Plan to support the six priority areas identified by the Government. Some existing programmes in Sulawesi will be augmented and others entailing WASH, health, camp management and logistics activities will be developed.
The response plan will focus on immediate response over a three-month period. On 2 October and Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock (USG/ERC) announced an allocation of US$15 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to bolster relief assistance for people affected by this emergency
Global appeal status
At the end of September 2018, 21 Humanitarian Response Plans (HRP) and the Syria Regional Response Plan (3RP) require $25.32 billion to assist 97.4 million people in urgent need of humanitarian support. The plans are funded at $10.63 billion; this amounts to 42 per cent of financial requirements for 2018. For the remainder of 2018, humanitarian organizations require another $14.69 billion to meet the needs outlined in these plans.
Global requirements are $1.13 billion higher than at this time last year. Overall coverage and the dollar amount were only marginally higher in late September 2018 than at the same time in 2017.
High-level events The USG/ERC made a strong appeal for HRP funding for South Sudan and Yemen at two high-level events at UN headquarters last month. At an event on 25 September on the crisis in South Sudan during the General Assembly, the USG/ERC asked that donors sustain their generous and large response to the crisis to enable life-saving activities and to encourage a multi-year approach to crisis response with stronger focus on stabilization, resilience and recovery from the conflict. In his statement to the Security Council on Yemen on 21 September, he announced that we may now be approaching a tipping point beyond which it will be impossible to prevent massive loss of life as a result of widespread famine across the country.
Three days later, the Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen reiterated the call for more funding and more humanitarian partners on the ground to respond to the unprecedented emergency in Yemen.
The UNHCR Commissioner and USG/ERC ended a mission to Afghanistan last month with a call for donors to urgently increase and sustain support for humanitarian response in the country, and to take measures to find durable solutions for millions of people caught up in Afghanistan’s displacement crisis.
On 3-4 September, in a follow-up event to the 2017 Oslo Humanitarian Conference on Nigeria and the Lake Chad Region, Germany, Nigeria, Norway and the UN co-hosted the High-Level Conference on the Lake Chad Region in Berlin. On this occasion, UN Member States, international organizations and civil society actors discussed humanitarian assistance, stabilization and development cooperation in the region. Humanitarian and development announcements made at the conference totalled $2.17 billion and it is estimated that $1.02 billion was for humanitarian assistance in 2018 for Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria. Of that amount, approximately $875 million (86%), has been made available to recipient organizations.
International financial institutions pledged an additional $467 million in concessional loans.
Concerning pledging conferences this year, according to data reported to FTS by donors and recipient organizations as of 18 September, 95 per cent of pledges have been fulfilled for Yemen, 91 per cent of pledges have been fulfilled for Somalia, and 82 per cent of pledges have been fulfilled for DRC. In each of these countries, many donors have contributed above and beyond their original announcements.
For Syria and the Region, the EU recently published a tracking report on announcements made in Brussels in April which can be accessed here:
www.consilium.europa.eu/media/36437/syria-report-six.pdf Donors are urged to quickly fulfil outstanding pledges made at the conferences and to consider providing additional funding before the end of the year.
Between 1 January and 30 September 2018, the Emergency Relief Coordinator approved $395 million in grants from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), including $265 million from the Rapid Response Window and $130 million from the Underfunded Emergencies Window, for life-saving activities in 38 countries. A total of $40 million was released in September to assist people affected by underfunded emergencies in Angola, Bangladesh, Burundi, Central African Republic and Rwanda; as well as people affected by flooding in India and Myanmar, and Venezuelan refugees and migrants arriving in Ecuador and Peru.
Country-based pooled funds (CBPFs) have received a total of US$667 million from 31 donors between January and September 2018. During this period, the 18 operational funds have allocated $478 million to 921 projects, implemented by 525 partners. Over 60 per cent of all CBPF allocations were disbursed to NGOs, including 21 per cent ($100.6 million) directly to national NGOs. Another 36 per cent was allocated to UN agencies and a smaller portion to Red Cross/Red Crescent organizations, which have received 1.2 per cent of funding ($5.8 million) for direct project implementation. The first allocation for 2018 of the Yemen Humanitarian Fund (YHF) for $90 million is ongoing and focuses on covering gaps in first-line responses in cluster strategies and providing life-saving support to people in newly accessible and hard-to-reach areas. In Ethiopia, the Humanitarian Coordinator launched a $30 million reserve allocation targeting immediate and life-saving activities in the nutrition, health, WASH, agriculture/livestock, emergency shelter/NFI, education and protection sectors. Finally, reserve allocations were also ongoing in Afghanistan and Myanmar during September.
In Myanmar, an integrated CBPF and CERF allocation strategy ($1 million CBPF reserve and $2.95 million CERF) prioritized projects aligned with the Myanmar Humanitarian Fund (MHF) operating principles and the CERF Life Saving Criteria, aiming at achieving the main objective of addressing critical unmet needs of flood‐affected people across the country, particularly the most vulnerable people.
The humanitarian situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated considerably over the past year, primarily due to the drought, but also as a result of worsening violence. Overall, the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance and protection services in Afghanistan has increased dramatically since the beginning of 2018, from 3.3 million people to 5.5 million people. Over half of the needs are generated by conflict and population movement. In the meantime, chronic vulnerabilities such as poverty, food insecurity, and unemployment are also increasing. Afghanistan is experiencing its most severe drought since 2011, with some 20 provinces affected by significantly reduced rainfall from winter snow. Some 2.2 million chronically food insecure people are on the verge of acute food insecurity, with four provinces – Badakhshan, Badghis, Faryab and Herat – likely to pitch into a state of emergency unless they receive comprehensive and sustained humanitarian assistance. Drought-related displacement is growing in volume and geographical scope – now constituting 40 percent (119,000) of the overall number of people displaced in Afghanistan in 2018. It is likely that the Afghan population – some 15 million of whom are dependent on the agriculture sector across these 20 provinces for livelihoods – will take years to recover. Overall, more than 12 million Afghans have been displaced internally or abroad during the last four decades of conflict, natural hazards, disasters and the resulting socio-economic upheaval.
Since 25 August 2017, extreme violence in Rakhine State, Myanmar, has driven over 727,000 Rohingya refugees across the border into Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Statelessness imposed over generations has rendered this population seriously vulnerable, even before the severe traumas of this most recent crisis. The vast majority of these refugees now live in congested sites that are ill-equipped to handle the monsoon rains and cyclone seasons – with alarmingly limited options for evacuation. Low levels of funding are seriously hampering the capacity of humanitarian to respond effectively to the scale and scope of the humanitarian needs in the refugee camps, particularly to ensure safe shelter, appropriate educational options, nutritional support, and most critically, the quality of health services available for an extremely vulnerable population. For example, with the health sector only 23 per cent funded, programming for non-communicable diseases, malaria, TB, and HIV/AIDS remains insufficient, and partners are struggling to scale up service provision which is critical for emergencies including obstetric emergencies.
The alarming financial shortfall for humanitarian programmes in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea has had detrimental consequences on the lives of the most vulnerable. More than 40 per cent (10.3 million) of the population remains undernourished. One in five children under-five is stunted with likely irreversible physical and cognitive repercussions. More than 9 million people lack access to essential health services. Pregnant women, young children and people living with diseases, in particular, struggle to access the care they need. Those living in rural areas are most at risk. Recent floods in North and South Hwanghae provinces have affected 280,000 people, killed 76 and displaced over 10,500 people, and chronic underfunding is making it difficult for UN agencies and their partners to respond to needs caused by the natural disasters that frequently hit the country. The 2018 Needs and Priorities plan seeks $111 million to assist 6 million out of 10.3 million people in need of humanitarian assistance.
The prospect of protracted displacement in Iraq is real, warranting a whole-of-system approach to respond to needs and work toward durable solutions. Some 1.9 million Iraqis remain displaced, with insecurity, lack of livelihood opportunities, destroyed housing, and explosive remnants of war contamination among the key barriers to returning. Considerable protection concerns exist, especially for women and children with perceived ties to ISIL. Critical funding gaps are hampering the response, particularly in food security, health, shelter and non-food item sectors, and the WASH sector. Urgent funding priorities include water supply interventions in the south, especially in Basra, which is experiencing water shortages and a gastrointestinal disease outbreak. Child health and nutrition services for up to 180,000 pregnant and lactating mothers, 300,000 children under the age of five and 5,000 newborn babies lack adequate funding.
The level of humanitarian need in Myanmar remains high and is driven by multiple factors including armed conflict, protracted displacement, inter-communal violence, statelessness, segregation, discrimination, food insecurity and vulnerability to natural disasters. More than 720,000 people – mostly stateless Rohingya Muslims – were forced to flee the country in August last year and there remains little tangible progress on addressing the root causes of violence and discrimination against this population. More than 128,000 Muslims confined in camps, some since violence erupted in 2012, have little to no access to essential services. In Kachin and Shan, persistent cycles of displacement due to conflict continue to raise serious protection concerns, with annual flooding exacerbating existing vulnerabilities. In both areas of the country, access remains a critical challenge.
Recent violence in Tripoli has highlighted the fragile situation in Libya. Thousands of people have been displaced, including families staying in schools converted into makeshift IDP shelters. The violence led to a breakdown in basic services, with frequent electricity cuts and compromised access to water. The situation is compounded by liquidity challenges which deepen needs among the most vulnerable. Humanitarian partners are responding to pre-existing and new needs, but the response is undermined by underfunding. With only 24 per cent of financial requirements covered, the ability of partners to provide assistance in life-saving sectors such as water, sanitation and hygiene and protection, as well as education, is limited. Additional funds are required to support a nation-wide measles vaccination campaign, targeting 3 million children against the backdrop of an ongoing outbreak.
South Sudan continues to experience extensive humanitarian needs, including dire levels of food insecurity and malnutrition. In September, 6.1 million people (59% of the population) faced crisis, emergency, or catastrophe levels (IPC Phase 3-5) of food insecurity. This includes 47,000 people in catastrophic conditions (IPC Phase 5). Urgent funding is needed in the coming months to procure and preposition food and other life-saving supplies during the approaching dry season, when these activities are most cost-effective. Food insecurity is expected to decline slightly following the October-December harvest, and rise again in January-March, when 5.2 million people are expected to be in IPC Phases 3-5, including 36,000 in IPC Phase 5. Resources are also needed to scale up preparedness and capacity to respond to Ebola Virus Disease. Though no cases have been reported in South Sudan, there is a risk of cross-border spread.
An agreement on 17 September to establish a demilitarized zone in Idlib, Syria, provided a reprieve for close to three million people placed at risk by a major military escalation in the area, of whom more than two million were already in need of humanitarian assistance. Civilian deaths and injuries due to airstrikes and shelling, as well as displacement and attacks impacting health facilities, were reported in the Idlib area in the weeks prior to the announcement of the agreement. Response and readiness efforts continued in Idlib and other parts of the north-west, drawing to a large extent on cross-border assistance channels from Turkey. Despite significant access challenges, humanitarian assistance continued to be provided across the country, including in areas that had recently come under Government control such as eastern Ghouta, northern rural Homs and much of the south-west. Cross-border assistance to the south-west under the framework of Security Council resolution 2393 remained suspended, but assistance was delivered from Damascus, primarily through the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC). Deployment of an inter-agency convoy from Damascus to Rukban on the Syria-Jordan border became increasingly urgent, with reports of a deterioration of the humanitarian situation in a camp estimated to be hosting up to 45,000 people. The situation in eastern Deir-Ez-Zor, in the east of the country, also deteriorated, with clashes linked to counter-ISIL operations displacing thousands in rural areas with limited humanitarian access and reports of restrictions on the onward movement of displaced people.
Steep economic decline accelerated in Yemen in September, with the Yemeni riyal losing about 30 per cent of its value against the US dollar during the month. Because Yemen imports the vast majority of its food and other basic commodities, this has translated into sharp rises in prices of food, fuel and other essentials – placing these goods increasingly out of reach for millions of Yemenis at a time when famine remains a real threat. In parallel, conflict in Hudaydah has intensified, with about 550,000 people displaced by the violence since 1 June. Aid operations have dramatically expanded, reaching 8 million people with direct assistance across the country every month. Partners have provided rapid response kits to nearly all families recently displaced from Hudaydah, as well as additional assistance based on assessed needs. Generous funding has been key: the 2018 HRP has received US$1.96 billion, or 67 per cent of requirements. Despite these achievements, recent developments threaten to overwhelm the operation’s capacity to respond. Urgent steps are needed to stabilize the economy, keep all ports and main roads open, uphold international humanitarian law, and move towards a political solution. Partners are also seeking full funding for the $3 billion HRP in order to deliver all activities in the plan.
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.