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Support for underfunded crises from UN Emergency Fund

Originally published


(New York, 1 October 2018): The Emergency Relief Coordinator (ERC) has finalised allocations totalling $80 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for humanitarian response to some of the UN's least well-funded 2018 response plans across Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. The decision confirms provisional allocations the ERC made earlier in the year. The funds will sustain and scale up aid operations across 9 countries, providing support to approximately 2.8 million people displaced by internal or international conflict or suffering from food security or health crises. Funds will be allocated to UN agencies who will be responsible for implementing agreed programmes.

In confirming the allocations, the ERC said: "I am extremely grateful to all our donors, who have already contributed $422 million for CERF in 2018. While two thirds of CERF resources are used to deal with new or escalating crises during the year, the remainder is dedicated to improving funding for many of the UN's least well-funded humanitarian programmes. This year we are allocating more than previously from the CERF to underfunded crises - and we can only do that because our donors voluntarily and generously provide us with the necessary resources".

Approximately half the resources under these allocations will be allocated to programmes in Sudan and to support Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. Commenting on these allocations, the ERC said: "The plight of the Rohingya refugees, and the exceptional generosity of Bangladesh in hosting them, has unfortunately not attracted as generous an international response so far in 2018 as we would have liked. The UN appeal for 2018 is currently less than 25% funded. I hope this new CERF allocation will prompt further consideration from other donors of additional funding. On Sudan, I was struck visiting Khartoum and South Kordofan in May at the scale of humanitarian need, among host communities, among displaced people but also among the refugee populations, largely from South Sudan and the growing gap between lifesaving needs and the resources available to meet them. Sudan has been generous in its approach to receiving people fleeing from South Sudan and it is important that it does not have to bear this burden alone, not least given the number of Sudan's own citizens who need humanitarian assistance."

This second round brings the total allocations from CERF's underfunded emergencies window in 2018 to US$180 million - the highest annual amount ever allocated to underfunded crises since the fund's inception in 2005. As the UN and humanitarian partners work tirelessly to assist the most vulnerable, and with the humanitarian funding gap growing year after year, it is vital that resources are available for future life-saving response. In addition to the allocations for the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh and Sudan, which account for $38million of the $80 million now allocated, other, smaller, allocations have been made for needs in seven additional countries: Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Libya, the Republic of Congo and Rwanda.

Established by the United Nations General Assembly in 2005 as a global fund 'for all, by all' CERF is a critical enabler of effective, timely and life-saving humanitarian action, helping frontline partners on the ground to kick start or reinforce emergency activities. Since its inception, the fund has assisted hundreds of millions of people with more than $5 billion across 100 countries and territories due to the generous and consistent support from its donors.

For further information, please contact:
Jessica Bowers Kiyanja, CERF secretariat:

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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