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 1,239,912 refugees. Of these, 808,554 are from South Sudan, 332,506 from the Congo, 38,526 from Burundi, 27,899 from Somalia and 17,257 from other countries.
The bulk of the South Sudanese refugees are in the West Nile region while most of the Congolese are in Western and Southwestern 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:
- Water, Sanitation and Hygiene
- Shelter & Infrastructure
- Armed Violence Reduction and Conflict Management
- Protection and Community Services
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