The European Commission's Directorate General for Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO) administers humanitarian aid on behalf of the EU. ECHO is one of the world's largest humanitarian donors with which Tearfund has a long standing partnership. Most recently we have worked with ECHO in the countries and projects detailed below.
Tearfund has been operational in Sudan since 2004, when violence erupted in Darfur - Western Sudan. More than ten years since the conflict broke out, a cycle of violence and insecurity continues to cause people to flee. There are more than 2.5 million people internally displaced in Darfur. Tearfund has been working with conflict-affected vulnerable people to meet their basic needs and provide access to lifesaving services - nutritional support, clean water, sanitation and hygiene education. With ECHO funding, Tearfund aimed to save lives by supporting 24,155 children under five and pregnant mothers facing malnutrition. Tearfund also aimed to support 9,500 vulnerable households with emergency distributions of essentials needed to live day-to-day (plastic sheets, plastic mats, jerry cans, soap, mosquito nets and blankets).
It is with extreme disappointment that Tearfund received notification from the government that our work in Sudan has been closed down. We have issued a statement about this which is available on our website. Tearfund through ECHO funding was implementing a nutrition and emergency response programme. At the point of closure, Tearfund was running nutrition centres and reached over 19,000 children under five facing malnutrition and over 1,200 vulnerable households affected by the emergency with essentials needed to live day to day (plastic sheets, plastic mats, jerry cans, soap, mosquito nets and blankets). Tearfund are deeply distressed by the impact this closure has had on many vulnerable people and in particular women and children affected by malnutrition.
Tearfund has been operational in South Sudan since 1998, and in particular, Jonglei state where Tearfund has worked with the community to save the lives of children and mothers who have been affected by malnutrition, as a result of lack of food, health services, and access to clean water. The political crisis which turned violent in December 2013 has compounded problems in Uror county in Jonglei state, where over 20,000 IDPs have moved to. This has added to the burden on the land which so many women and children rely on in their day-to-day lives. The result is a malnutrition crisis evident by increasingly high malnutrition rates.
In 2015, with ECHO support, Tearfund were able support 39,721 mothers and children in Uror County who were at risk of malnutrition, with preventative services and outpatient treatment. The numbers of mothers and children coming to our centres in 2015 has steadily increased over the course of 2015 as agricultural activities were hampered by ongoing instability and climate change. As families have been unable to plant crops last year, food has become even scarcer and those who feel the impact of this most acutely are young children. With this in mind, ECHO are continuing to support this work in 2016 enabling Tearfund to continue to provide lifesaving nutrition assistance to mothers in children in Uror County, at a time when such critical activities are most needed.
Central African Republic
Tearfund has been operational in the Central African Republic (CAR) since January 2014 following a coup in December 2013 which sparked widespread violence and displacement across the country. Many people’s homes have been destroyed and hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced. In Boda a town in the Lobaye prefecture in the South Western region of CAR where Tearfund is working, nearly 12,000 people are living in IDP camps. Although the security situation in Lobaye has stabilised in recent months, there is still an underlying tension in communities.
Tearfund received funding from ECHO which enabled us to help meet the critical basic needs of 36,568 people in Boda. Thanks to this funding, Tearfund has provided 23,184 people with access to safe water from wells, boreholes and springs which has increased the percentage of households with access to safe water from 38% to 83%. We’ve also trained pump mechanics to ensure that the pumps will be well maintained. Latrine blocks were constructed in six IDP camps and five schools, with the result that 14,350 school children now have access to gender-friendly latrines. Tearfund staff also trained people in good hygiene practices. Community leaders have told us that their villages have seen a great reduction in the number of cases of diarrhea and intestinal worms demonstrating the impact of hygiene promotion work. 24,500 people affected by food insecurity received vegetable seeds, tools and training, enabling them to provide their families with food and to grow crops to sell, therefore restoring their livelihoods.
Through the funding provided by ECHO, Tearfund will be able to restore people’s ability to grow food and earn an income, as well as reduce the risk of waterborne and sanitation-related diseases for conflict-affected communities living in and around Boda.
Tearfund has been operational in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq since September 2014.
With funding from ECHO, Tearfund has been able to reach 6,834 people with one-off emergency cash payments in order to help prepare families displaced by current conflict for the harsh winter weather. Distributions took place in Kurdistan across December 2014 and January 2015, with project monitoring ongoing. Families received amounts scaled to the size of their households, and reports so far show that they are overwhelmingly satisfied with the process with 83% stated it made them feel better prepared for winter.
Democratic Republic of Congo
Tearfund has been working in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) since 1986. In 2002 they became operational in the South Kivu province, working to bring emergency support as well as recovery to resettling and conflict-affected communities.
Between March 2015 and February 2016 ECHO funded a food security and livelihoods project in South Kivu and Katanga. Under the project Tearfund worked with communities to meet the needs of 21,270 of the most vulnerable people. This was one through a multi-sector approach, focusing on restoring livelihoods, access to sufficient food and building resilience for vulnerable populations in remote, conflict-affected communities.
Through the project 2,500 beneficiaries received agricultural inputs and were trained on sustainable agricultural techniques and conservation agriculture. Some 625 vegetable farmers received vegetable seeds, these farmers were also trained on cross-cutting issues such as nutrition and HIV/AIDS, while 200 beneficiaries received ducks and pigs through animal fairs and received animal husbandry training. In addition, 20 fishing groups received fishing equipment, five grain mills were installed and 25 community disaster management committees trained and established.
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