Danish emergency funding to UNHCR assists 160,000 South Sudanese refugees in Sudan

Sudan is one of the largest emergencies in Africa today. Nearly 160,000 South Sudanese refugees have arrived in Sudan in the first half of 2017.

Over 400,000 South Sudanese refugees arrived in Sudan between December 2013 and July 2017. Refugees started arriving across 9 states, including North Darfur. Refugees register with the authorities after arrival, which UNHCR supports. The majority of new arrivals are women and children. ;

Nearly 160,000 South Sudanese refugees have arrived in Sudan in the first half of 2017.

Facing one of the largest emergencies in Africa today, UNHCR’s Representative in Sudan, Noriko Yoshida, welcomed Denmark’s support with USD 1 million for the response to the South Sudan situation.

“At a time when we are seeing so many desperate refugees coming across the border into Sudan and other countries in the region, it’s heartening to witness the support of the Danish people and to know you stand with us in the effort to meet immediate needs and help us save lives”, Yoshida said.

Yoshida also expressed her gratitude for Sudan’s continued generosity in receiving refugees and keeping its border open. Over 400,000 South Sudanese refugees have arrived in the country since December 2013. The majority of the new arrivals, over 80 per cent, are women and children.

“Ultimately there needs to be a solution in South Sudan, so that people do not have to flee to neighbouring countries”, Yoshida continued. “Financial support for the humanitarian response is important, as well as efforts to secure peace in which Denmark and other countries play an important role as members of the United Nations”.

Yoshida praised the response of the Sudanese people especially: “Along Sudan’s borders in small villages and towns, ordinary Sudanese people are sharing what they have with arriving refugees, even when they have limited food and water themselves. It’s a true act of generosity”.

Yoshida said Danish emergency funding will help UNHCR to support both refugees and the host communities receiving refugees, including local health facilities and schools shared by Sudanese and refugees alike.

UNHCR is helping refugees who are living outside camps. This reduces the isolation refugees often face when only in camps. This out-of-camp approach also enhances refugee resilience and allows people have a better chance to rebuild and live a normal life. However, more help is urgently needed to the communities who are struggling to assist the refugees.

UNHCR and its partners have appealed for USD 883.5 million from international donors like Denmark to assist refugees and host communities affected by the South Sudan Situation, of which USD 102.8 million is required to cover needs in Sudan. As of July 2017, less than a quarter of the funds have been received. Current priorities includes provision of immediate life-saving support to new arrivals, including food, health, nutrition, non-food item assistance and education.

Denmark as a donor to UNHCR

Denmark contributes with an Emergency Reserve Fund of DKK 50.5 million (USD 7.2 million) at the start of every year, which UNHCR can allocate to where the needs are most urgent. The flexibility of the fund allows UNHCR to respond to emergencies which saves lives and assists displaced people with critical protection needs and acute basic necessities.

Denmark has long ranked among UNHCR’s top ten donors, and was UNHCR’s 9th donor in 2016. In addition to the Emergency Reserve Fund, Denmark’s other flexible contribution includes DKK 160 million in unearmarked funding, which is of vital importance to support amongst other so-called “forgotten” refugee situations which are critically underfunded, as they attract minimal public attention.