UNICEF requires more than US$ 133 million to address the needs of children and women affected by the crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2012. Out of this US$ 35.2 million is urgently needed in order to meet the most critical needs.
An estimated 2.2 million people are internally displaced in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) as of June 2012—the highest number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in DRC since the end of 2009. At least 50 per cent of the displaced are under 18 years of age. Grave violations are taking place, including massacres of entire villages by armed groups, mass rape, abductions, exploitation and abuse, and child recruitment and use in armed forces and groups. At the same time, malnutrition has surpassed emergency levels; nationally, one million children suffer from severe acute malnutrition (SAM). DRC is currently facing a nationwide cholera emergency - in 2012, 20,007 cases and 481 deaths from cholera have been recorded as of 23 July. This represents 92 per cent of the number of cases recorded in 2011 and more than 100 per cent of the cases in 2010 in only half a year. There is on-going occupation, pillaging and burning of schools and educational material, meaning that the return to school of over 60,000 children in North Kivu is in peril and the risk of recruitment is an extreme concern, especially with a net increase in reported cases.
UNICEF plays a critical role in humanitarian response, coordination and quality evaluation. We are the lead of the WASH, Nutrition, NFI/Shelter and Education (co-lead with Save the Children) clusters as well as of the Child Protection Working Group and the assistance to survivors of gender-based violence (GBV) within the national multi-sector strategy. The strong response to the prevailing crises is a result of the strong collaboration with national and international NGOs and governmental partners.
This Humanitarian Action Update provides an overview of the situation and requirements to respond to the crisis in the DRC. At the beginning of 2012 UNICEF’s funding requirements amounted to $143 million. As the situation in DRC has deteriorated, UNICEF’s requirements have increased to a total of $164 million, with a current funding gap of $133 million. This request is aligned with the national Humanitarian Action Plan (HAP) 2012. Out of this revised requirement, $35.2 million are urgently needed to meet the critical needs of women and children in DRC.