The Danish Refugee Council (DRC) established operations in Tanzania in October 2015 to provide emergency assistance to Burundi refugees that were fleeing the violence that ensued following disputed presidential election in April 2015. From the outset, DRC’s operations in Tanzania have been based in Nduta (55,000 refugees) and Mtendeli (30,000 refugees and continually receiving up to a capacity of 50,000) refugee camps with the main programme office located in Kibondo. Since June 2016, DRC is expanding programming to support Nyarugusu refugee camp, with a sub-office in Kasulu town. Nyarugusu is hosting 60,000 Congolese refugees, as well as being a temporary/semi-permanent site for up to 60,000 Burundians, due to limited space in the other camps.
Since the opening of Nduta and Mtendeli refugee camps, DRC has been delivering an integrated response assistance that combines camp coordination and camp management with provision of life saving assistance that includes: distribution of core relief items, construction of protection-sensitive facilities and infrastructure (schools, police posts and community centers) and a community-driven program delivering construction of transitional shelter. DRC have also been closely involved in the protection sector through community-based initiatives and integrated programming with CCCM.
With the displacement from Burundi expected to be protracted – given the non-resolution of the political situation and complex land issues also preventing voluntary return thereafter, DRC programme in Tanzania is now shifting from emergency phase to exploring livelihood programming for the refugees and host community populations in the respective locations. DRC together with Danish Demining Group (DDG) will also be seeking to implement conflict reduction initiatives among the Burundi refugees as well as between Burundi and Congolese refugees, starting with mapping the conflict dynamics within the communities.