- Executive Summary
The humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe continues to be stable but fragile due to many factors. The main humanitarian needs in Zimbabwe relate to food security, the continued threat of disease outbreaks, and requirements relating to specific needs of a wide range of highly vulnerable groups, such as child- or female-headed households, the chronically ill, internally displaced people (IDPs), returned migrants, and refugees and asylum-seekers. The food security situation improved slightly in 2011 thanks to joint and concerted efforts by the Government and the humanitarian community in timely provision of agricultural inputs and increased acreage planted plus extension support.
However, uneven rainfall distribution and a dry spell in the 2011 agricultural season affected six of the country's ten provinces and forestalled a potential good harvest that could have reversed the food aid needs. The increasingly uncertain pattern of weather, characterized by droughts and poor rains, is making farming difficult and unpredictable.
It is projected that 1.026 million people (12% of the population) will still require food assistance at the peak of the 2012 lean season. Rates for chronic and acute child malnutrition still stand at 34% and 2.4%, respectively. A third of rural Zimbabweans still drink from unprotected water sources and are thus exposed to water-borne diseases. While cholera incidence is significantly decreased compared to past years, localized outbreaks continued in 2011 due to poor infrastructure for water, sanitation, hygiene and health. The low coverage of basic health care has led to rising maternal and child mortality and overall excess morbidity and mortality. The HIV/AIDS prevalence stands at 13.7% and substantially increases vulnerabilities.
Due to economic hardships fuelled partly by the over-60% unemployment rate in the country, an estimated three million Zimbabweans live abroad, the majority in Botswana and the Republic of South Africa, mostly on irregular status. The moratorium that Zimbabwean migrants enjoyed from April 2009 in South Africa was lifted in October 2011, implying the resumption of deportation of irregular migrants from South Africa, in addition to the deportations of approximately 2,500 people per month from Botswana. Many of these deportees require humanitarian aid. Zimbabwe also continues to be affected by mixed migration flows of refugees, asylum-seekers and migrants, as well as trafficked people, primarily fleeing conflicts, drought and serious economic challenges from the Great Lakes and the Horn of Africa region. Significant numbers of IDPs and those in displacement-like situations continue to need humanitarian aid and support for durable solutions.
Sustained engagement by all actors has opened possibilities for longer-term, recovery- and development-oriented interventions focusing on the underlying root causes of the emergency. With funding expected to increasingly come from non-humanitarian channels in 2012, the Humanitarian Country Team proposes a more humanitarian-focused Consolidated Appeal (CAP) showing clear complementarities and linkages between humanitarian and recovery/development components. While maintaining the programme-based approach that was adopted in 2011, priority humanitarian needs will be covered under the 2012 CAP while recovery activities will be addressed by other initiatives such as the Zimbabwe United Nations Development Assistance Framework and other relevant government and non-governmental organisation mechanisms.
In order to address the identified priority needs of the vulnerable groups, the 2012 CAP requests a total of US$ 268,376,059 to meet its strategic objectives. While this request is a significant reduction from requirements in the 2011 CAP, it should not be interpreted to imply a reduction in humanitarian needs of the country: the reduction in financial requirements comes mainly from transition of recovery activities to non-CAP funding mechanisms that became operational in 2011. Furthermore, fragility of the humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe may require a revision of the funding requirements should the scenarios outlined in this document need to be re-visited.
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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