Improving the living conditions of refugees from Darfur

Since 2004, the UNHCR has been building and maintaining camps for Sudanese refugees in Chad.230 000 persons live there today.

Humanitarian and Development

Eastern Chad

Dominique Héron

30 000 € to the Selection Committee at 2007/05/22

Project leader


Due to the Sudanese conflict in the province of Darfur, many refugees have been flowing into Chad since mid-2003. In 2004, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) started building 11 camps for them in a virtually desert area. Everything has to be built from scratch to guarantee the survival of the refugees and of the Chadian villagers residing in the host areas: access to water, food supply, and medical care.

Guaranteeing access to water

One year later, the situation in the camps remains problematic: malnutrition and waterborne diseases affect many young children, and security is extremely precarious. Thus, many of the women and young girls are victims of rape when they venture outside the camps to find firewood to cook their meals.

The UNHCR has therefore shouldered the huge task of improving the living conditions in the camps. For example, it wants to reinforce security, distribute kerosene stoves and energy efficient cookers to minimize wood gathering (and the exploitation of this natural resource so scarce in the region) and consolidate the health services in place. It also wants to provide the camps with access to pure water thanks to very deep water boreholes. And it also aims to develop income producing activities, particularly by encouraging the refugees to resume the schooling of their children. This enormous program deserves to be supported!