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Health care and water supply for South Sudanese refugees

Due to the ongoing crisis in South Sudan, many people have fled to neighboring countries. Since July 2106, almost 80,000 refugees from South Sudan have been registered in the north eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Then again, many Congolese returnees who fled to South Sudan during the LRA riots in 2008 now seek refuge in their home country.

The journey across borders can be tiring and dangerous, most refugees often arrive their destination very weakened or even injured. There is also a high risk of epidermic outbreaks. These refugees are therefore are in dire need of access to clean drinking water and adequate health care. In our work in the region, we are committed to improving water supply, sanitary and hygiene conditions as well as ensuring free access to medical care for the refugees.

More and more people from crisis-riden South Sudan continue to flee to the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In the north eastern part of the country, the Ituri and Haute Uélé provinces have been most affected by the large number of refugees.

​Communities in Malteser International’s project region have also been affected by the crisis, especially the health zones Aba and Adi. Though some refugees have been accomodated in camps, many have had to settle in schools, churches, provisional shelters, and with host families. Here, water needed for cooking and personal hygiene is mostly collected from open water sources such as rivers and streams. However, due to high population density, these water sources are easily polluted, representing a serious health hazard for the communities. In order to minimize this risk, measures are being taken to improve water supply and purification. In addition, facilities for the disposal of waste are created in order to prevent further contamination of water and the living environment of the people.

Refugees are mostly weakened and injured when they arrive in DR Congo. This has led to an increase in the number of patients in the Aba and Adi health zones. These patients usually don't have enough money to bear the costs of treatment and medication. That is why we offer financial support to the health centers and hospitals in the region and provide them with medicine kits. This ensures that refugees and returnees receive free basic health care.

  • Free medical care for refugees
  • Improving water supply
  • Improving sanitary facilities
  • Reducing health risks and the spread of diseases
  • Distribution medical kits to health centers and hospitals, and supporting them financially to enable them offer free medical services to the people
  • Distributing necessary materials for water purification to 3,000 households
  • Providing refugees with vital sanitary products
  • Setting up health commitees and running hygiene education campaigns to prevent transfer of diseases
  • Construction of latrines for households and refugee camps
  • Construction of sanitary facilities; latrines, showers, incineratorsat highly frequented health centers
  • Ensuring occupational safety in health centers and clinics, and providing them with materials needed for the prevention of infection

Country info

Capital: Kinshasa
Area: 2,345,410 km²
Population: approx. 70 Millionen

Project data

Financing: German Federal Foreign Office (AA) and donations
Partners: Health centers and reference hospitals, local and national public health authorities

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