Uganda’s location in the Great Lakes region is strategic for providing assistance to refugees. Following the renewed outbreak of civil war in South Sudan in September 2016 and ongoing conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Government of Uganda and UNHCR estimate that Uganda is presently hosting 1,505,323 refugees. A verification exercise is ongoing with results of the actual refugee numbers expected November 2018. Of these, 1,053,598 are from South Sudan, 276,570 from the Congo, 40,497 from Burundi, 37,193 from Somalia and 37,193 from other countries.

The bulk of the South Sudanese refugees are in the West Nile region while most of the Congolese are in western Uganda.

The high presence of refugees puts pressure on resources available in hosting communities and creates a pressing challenge to ensure protection of the new arrivals. At the same time, Uganda is facing post-conflict recovery in the northern region, which has been affected by rebel insurgency up until 2007. In the pastoral region of Karamoja in the northeast the situation is transitioning from armed conflict to community development.

About the program

Since 1997, the Danish Refugee Council (DRC) has worked with refugees and internally displaced persons in Uganda. From 2007 to 2012 Danish Demining Group (DDG) carried out land mine clearance in northern and western Uganda, based on which Uganda in 2012 was declared free of mines. In 2010, DRC-DDG launched operations in Karamoja, where complementary Livelihoods and Armed Violence Reduction programs are taking place. Currently, DRC-DDG is working in West-Nile, Northern Uganda, Western Uganda and Karamoja.

DRC-DDG works within the areas of:

  • Livelihoods
  • Water, Sanitation and Hygiene
  • Shelter & Infrastructure
  • Armed Violence Reduction and Conflict Management
  • Protection and Community Services
  • Emergency Response

The aim of the operation in Uganda is to recreate safe environments, conducive to pursuing quality of life for displaced and conflict-affected populations in Uganda.

DRC aims to achieve this aims through following the objectives:

  • Contributing to conflict reduction
  • Enhancing opportunities for self-reliance
  • Developing the capacity of government agencies

Partners and Donors:

Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (BPRM)

Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA)

European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department

European Union Emergency Trust Fund

UK Department for International Development (DfID)

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

Elisabeth Fonden

P4G – Partnership for Green Growth and the Global Goals 2030