Close sites icon close
Search form

Search for the country site.

Country profile

Country website

UNHCR Global Appeal 1999 - The Sudan


UNHCR Global Appeal 1999 - The Sudan

1 December 1998

Basic Facts

What we do

Provide protection and assistance to all refugees, and extend basic assistance to refugees residing in camps pending durable solutions.

Who we help

Some 375,000 refugees, including more than 315,000 Eritreans, some 44,000 Ethiopians, 4,400 Chadians, 1,000 persons from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and 9,600 others, including Ugandans. Of the total, nearly 136,000 live in camps and some 239,000 are dispersed in urban areas.

Our requirements

US$ 10,294,406

Our offices

Khartoum, Es Showak, Port Sudan.

Our partners

Commissioner for Refugees (COR), Sudanese Red Crescent (SRC), Human Appeal International (HAI), Benevolence International Organisation (BIO), Global Health Foundation (GHF), Ockenden Venture (OV), Islamic African Relief Agency (IARA), Forestry National Corporation (FNC), Action Contre la Faim (ACF), Sudanaid, World Food Programme (WFP).


The refugees living in the Sudan arrived at various times throughout the past 30 years. The refugee camps for Eritrean and Ethiopian refugees are located in the eastern and Red Sea states. Refugees living outside the camps are mainly concentrated in the areas in and around Khartoum, Gedaref, Kassala and Port Sudan. Chadian refugees are located in a camp in western Sudan; refugees from the DRC are accommodated in a camp in Juba in south Sudan as well as in Khartoum; and Ugandan refugees are scattered in and around Khartoum.

Organized voluntary repatriation to Eritrea has yet to begin. During a pilot project conducted between November 1994 and May 1995, only about 25,000 refugees repatriated to Eritrea. Repatriation movements to Eritrea have been stalled since then due to various political and technical problems. More than 72,000 Ethiopian refugees were repatriated under an organized voluntary repatriation operation which began in mid-1993 and was concluded in May 1998.


UNHCR will repair and maintain health facilities, provide medicine and equipment for clinics and train health workers. Following a review in 1998, maternal and child health care services will be improved. Primary schools in densely populated camps will be restructured to ensure that the student/classroom ratio is acceptable. Camp-based refugees will have access to an adult literacy programme and youth will be offered vocational-skills training.

UNHCR maintains water systems and pumps, ensuring that potable water is available at all times. WFP is responsible for securing and delivering basic food commodities to the camps (Extended Delivery Points). Refugees living in urban areas benefit from supplementary assistance that includes medical treatment, counselling services, income-generating activities and literacy programmes. Since UNHCR does not have a presence in south Sudan, refugees from the DRC are assisted through the Operation Lifeline Sudan (OLS) and an NGO contracted by UNHCR.

Protection and Solutions

The Sudan's strategic position in the Horn of Africa and the fact that it has common boundaries with nine other African nations makes it necessary for UNHCR not only to fulfil its protection mandate but also to prepare coordinated responses in the event of new refugee influxes.

Certain refugee camps are situated so close to the borders that refugees' rights, and sometimes lives, are in danger. Ideally, these camps should be relocated; but suitable land is scarce. Besides, UNHCR is discussing the possibility of voluntary repatriation with refugees whose initial cause of flight has ceased to exist - such as Eritrean refugees. Data collected in April 1998 reveals that an overwhelming majority of Eritrean refugees would positively consider repatriating under UNHCR's auspices. Eritrean authorities appear willing to accept the return of these refugees provided assistance is provided to aid in the reintegration of the returnees.

UNHCR is also advocating the establishment of a joint eligibility committee.

Women and Children

UNHCR will provide assistance and support to women's associations and develop small income-generating activities run by women. Activities will include soap-production, sewing, embroidery and basket-making. A sanitary supplies programme for women, now offered on a pilot basis in four camps, will be expanded. A system for reporting and responding to cases of sexual violence is under discussion. Women in some of the camps are also involved in environmental projects, such as tree-planting, seedling production and growing vegetable gardens, and participate in literacy courses.

Primary education is provided for children, as are childhood immunization, growth monitoring and supplementary and therapeutic feeding. Activities such as community-run libraries and recreational centres for adolescents (which provide venues for sports, music groups, theatre groups and vegetable gardening) will be encouraged. Five community-run libraries are planned. Separated children will receive special attention. Training in the prevention of underage recruitment is planned as are awareness-raising activities on reproductive health and the harmful effects of early marriage and early pregnancy.


The high concentration of refugees living in areas over an extended period of time has resulted in serious deforestation and competition for scarce natural resources in refugee-hosting areas. A shortage of land for the settlements led to environmental degradation caused by a combination of natural and human processes. Although rehabilitation and preservation projects have begun, they are inadequate to the task. Consolidation and maintenance of pilot projects and environmental education for refugees, including lessons in using energy-saving devices, will be pursued.

Budget US$

ActivitiesGeneral programmesSpecial Programmes
Domestic Needs/Household Support41,3544,598
Water Supply544,017
Shelter/Other Infrastructures125,0269,195
Community Services44,647
Livestock/Animal Husbandry10,903
Legal Assistance/Protection78,93121,500
Agency Operational Support819,720153,181
Programme Delivery Costs*2,962,200329,088
Administrative Support683,400122,018
Total GP + SP10,294,406

* Includes costs for protection, monitoring and coordination.