Since 2013, the Central African Republic (CAR) has fallen victim to a conflict which has led to thousands of people losing their lives and to massive population movements. In February 2019, a peace agreement was signed between the government and 14 armed groups. But hostilities persist, and attacks and movements by armed groups are still causing people to flee.
Since January 2019, 52,000 people have returned to their areas of origin or come back to CAR from abroad. However, the country still has over 600,000 IDPs and 2.6 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. Over a third of the 2019 humanitarian plan remains unfunded and needs are unmet.
Humanitarians continue to be targeted in CAR: 272 incidents directly affecting humanitarian personnel/property were recorded in 2019. This shows that CAR continues to experience a highly complex and precarious humanitarian situation where persistent insecurity is still the main factor affecting people’s access to basic rights and services.
Since October 2019, severe flooding has affected over 57,000 people in the country and over 10,000 homes have been destroyed. The government has declared a state of emergency.
People we helped in the Central African Republic in 2019
Violent altercations and repeated clashes make it difficult to reach people in need, including for NRC. While CAR is one of the most dangerous places for humanitarians to work, we ensure that our support serves all communities equally though our integrated multi-sector assistance. We try to focus on hard-to-reach areas where few other organisations are present and aim to provide sustainable assistance.
In 2019, our country office operationalised its new Alindao office in Basse Kotto prefecture and we are striving to expand our reach even further in the upcoming year. NRC strives to influence the international community, advocating for increased funding and better protection of the most vulnerable people.
We support the public education system at the national, local and community levels in four prefectures to provide quality education to children. We also make sure that children who have missed out on their education are able to catch up with their peers. Our education teams:
- construct and rebuild schools to provide a safe and secure learning environment for children
- re-enrol children in courses so they can enjoy an education, while creating a routine and sense of normalcy for youth affected by displacement and trauma
- enlist and train teachers to strengthen their capacity on class management and teaching methodology
- through our accelerated learning programme, provide catch-up classes to children who have missed out on their education to allow them to reintegrate into the formal school system
- provide youth with training and support to enhance their livelihood skills and guide them towards a profession
Information, counselling and legal assistance (ICLA)
In CAR, our ICLA teams help people affected by displacement with their housing, land and property (HLP) rights. We:
- ensure that tenants are the rightful, legal owners through capacity building of local authorities, improvement of archiving systems, set up of community systems on the protection of HLP rights, etc.
- work to prevent further conflict over housing, land and property by providing local authorities and community mechanisms with much needed capacity building for them to better know their roles and responsibilities when it comes to assisting the resolution of HLP conflicts
- conduct activities to promote social cohesion and foster dialogue and conflict resolution between communities
- help people obtain legal documentation, including the civil and identity documentation necessary to access rights and services by building state agents' capacity and providing information sessions to the general public on the importance of such documentation
Livelihoods and food security
During the harvest period over one million people are expected to be severely food insecure. To restore the food security and livelihoods of communities affected by displacement, our teams:
- distribute agricultural tools and seeds to restore vulnerable households’ resilience
- provide training sessions on agricultural techniques to improve yields and increase households’ independence when growing different foods
- provide income generating activities to increase beneficiaries’ livelihoods
- provide food and household items for people in acute need through the distribution cash or vouchers to vulnerable individuals affected by displacement for them to be able to meet their basic food and non-food needs
Shelter and settlements
Our shelter work in CAR endeavours to improve living conditions for people affected by displacement. Our shelter teams:
- work with the ICLA team to ensure that households’ HLP rights are respected and upheld
- build and repair houses damaged or destroyed during the crisis, through the provision of in-kind material, cash and technical expertise by our shelter teams
- provide emergency shelter to people in displacement camps
- rehabilitate community infrastructures including administrative buildings and schools
Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) promotion
To restore the basic human rights and dignity of displaced people, we run water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) activities. Our teams:
- construct and treat water sources such as wells and pumps providing clean drinking water for affected communities
- construct and repair latrines to help people to utilise dignified personal waste disposal systems
- promote hygiene awareness and materials to bring about long-term changes to sanitation practices
- provide materials to vulnerable individuals in need, in the form of cash, vouchers or in-kind materials
Humanitarian mediation and protection
In a context where conflict prevails, our regional project on Humanitarian Mediation and Protection, financed by Sida, has gained even more importance. The project seeks to contribute to improved protection of civilians through humanitarian mediation processes aiming at conflict prevention and mitigation. The activities include the:
- undertaking of conflict-sensitive, gender and protection analyses
- facilitation or support to dialogue processes and humanitarian mediation processes
- training of national and international actors
- Agence Française de Développement (AFD)
- Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO)
- Education Cannot Wait (ECW)
- Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (NMFA)
- Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA)
- Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida)
- Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC)
- United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR)
- United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
- United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for the Humanitarian Pooled Fund
- World Food Programme (WFP)
About NRC in CAR
Mounting hostilities disrupt aid delivery in the Central African Republic
Humanitarian operations in several parts of the Central African Republic are at a standstill due to ongoing election unrest and heightened insecurity, leaving many of the 2.8 million people in need of essential humanitarian aid without access to life-saving assistance.