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UNICEF response to South Sudan refugee situation - Media Update

Situation

  • According to UNHCR, 2,442 South Sudanese refugees arrived on July 25, 2016 through Elegu, Moyo, Lawmo, Arua and Kiryandongo. Total number of arrivals since 17th July 2016 is 37,890.
  • 73% of all new arrivals are children; 27,660 have arrived in the last 3 weeks.
  • Following an inter-agency assessment mission comprising of UNHCR, Office of Prime Minister, UNICEF and other partners, a new settlement is to be opened in Yumbe district. This settlement could potentially host up to 100,000 refugees.
  • UNICEF has delivered 23 large tents to support services in health, child protection and education at Elegu, in Nyumanzi, Pagirinya, Rhino Camp, Maaji III and Oraba border in Arua.

UNICEF Humanitarian response

Health & Nutrition:

  • Immunisation: between 19-26th July 2016, 5,501 children (4,487 under five, 1,014 above five years) were immunised against Polio; 11,536 children (4,313 under-fives, 7,223 above 5 years but below 15 years old) were immunised against measles. UNICEF is supporting the Uganda National Expanded Programme on Immunisation and district authorities to ensure that all children who arrive at the various border points are immunised. Adjumani and Arua districts have enough vaccines to support the response. UNICEF and Ministry of Health have a target of 15,000 under-fives for polio and 30,000 children below 15 years for measles immunisation.
  • Nutrition: In the past 4 days, there has been an increase in the Global Acute Malnutrition (GAM) among the refugees arriving at Elegu Reception Centre from 3.6% to 6.2%, an indication that the current arrivals have trekked longest or furthest.
  • From 18-26 July 2016, 4,331 children under-five were screened for nutrition and out of these, 270 are malnourished (GAM monitoring representing 6.2%). UNICEF and partner Concern Worldwide are monitoring the situation and will continue to assess the nutritional status of new arrivals.
  • 24,191 under-five children have been de-wormed to boost their immunity while 4,815 have received Vitamin A supplements to retain nutrient contents of food and facilitate normal growth.

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene                                

  • Five boreholes have been installed in Pagirinya refugee settlement to provide safe water to the new arrivals by UNICEF through Danish Refugee Council and Water Missions. 2,500 refugees are benefiting from boreholes.
  • UNICEF has delivered water, sanitation and hygiene supplies (10 cartons of laundry soap, 10 boxes of aqua tabs each contains 14,000 tabs, 3 mobilets, 10 handwashing facilities, 2 tins of 50 kgs of chorine power, 5 sets of latrine digging kits, 30 garbage plastic bags, 100 pieces of child potty, 20 heavy duty gloves, 20 gumboots, 20 hard brushes) to Elegu.
  • 4, 000 litres of Effective Micro-Organism (EMO) have been delivered to Adjumani to be used in Nyumanzi, Elegu reception center and Pagirinya settlements. EMO is a solution that is used for stench elimination and sludge reduction in latrines.
  • UNICEF is supporting Water Mission Uganda (WMU) to deploy additional hygiene promoters to sensitize/pass on good hygiene and sanitation practices to refugees at the Elegu reception center.
  • A pivate drilling company is on standby to drill 20 new boreholes once the new settlement area is cleared and ready to receive new arrivals.

Education:

  • Five tents of 72 square meters and 1 tent of 24 square meters have been delivered and mounted at Pagirinya Feeder School in Pagirinya Refugee Settlement. 1,500 new arrivals have been registered at the school which teaches pupils from Primary one-four.
  • Windle Trust, a partner with UNHCR has recruited 31 additional teachers to teach at Pagirinya Feeder School. The selection of teachers for the settlements is done by Windle Trust, UNICEF and district education officer.
  • Seven tents have been delivered and mounted at Maaji III refugee settlement. The school has a population of 3,500 in Primary one-six. The school was started in April this year.
  • 13 replenishment kits containing scholastic materials like books, chalk, pencils were delivered to Adjumani District Education Officer.

Child Protection: 

  • Tracing and Family reunification: UNICEF through its partners, Save the Children (using CPIMS)  and Uganda Red Cross has registered 139 separated children and 411 unaccompanied children in Adjumani and 1,550 separated children and 71 unaccompanied children registered by Save the Children in Kiryandongo. Both Save the Children and Uganda Red Cross are engaged in Family Tracing and reunification at the collection points, the reception and transit centres and the settlements and children are being reunified. Family tracing was done for 14 (6 female and 8 male) missing children at Elegu collection centre and reunified on spot with their families. The partners are conducting awareness rasing on child protetcion, child care and safety for new arrivals to avoid further separation and abuse of children.
  • Support and monitoring the child help desk where child related cases are reported and services provided accordingly.
  • Psychosocial support and counselling: 2,000 children have been registered at and are attending Child Friendly Space (CFS) activities in the CFS constructed in Nyumanzi refugee settlement by Save the Children with support from UNICEF, 1,066 have been registered and attending CFS activities in Kiryandongo at a child friendly space constructed by TPO.
  • All children that enter through the border points are receiving specialised psychosocial support to help deal with trauma they experience. The counselling is done under the guidance of care givers. At the child friendly spaces, experts are using play as a form of therapy. Children are encouraged to play both indoor and outdoor games. The outdoor games include football, netball, slides and sand boxes while indoor activities include story telling, drawing, chess, snakes and ladders, Ludo and omweso.

Behaviour Change support:

UNICEF via Uganda Red Cross Society (URCS), is rolling out community engagement activities in the emergency districts. Currently URCS is conducting a behaviour change rapid assessment to inform the specific interventions to be carried out.

Alongside this, Information, Education and Communication (IEC) materials for water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), infant and young children feeding and immunization are being adapted and translated into the relevant local languages and will be distributed during interpersonal communication/social mobilisation activities. A social mobiliser’s message kit has been shared with all partners in order to disseminate key messages on Health, WASH, Nutrition, Child Protection & Education.

Distributed by APO on behalf of United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).