A Sudanese girl from the host community in Egypt takes part in a portage session aiming at expanding attention span and hand-eye coordination organized by HI’s Khotwat Project for Early Detection and Early Intervention. | © Noha.K / HI
Up to 300,000 Sudanese are expected to cross the border and will need humanitarian assistance. HI is prepared to aid refugees and host communities. Donors are urged to prevent disaster.
Egypt has become the primary destination for people fleeing the conflict in Sudan that started on April 15th, with 42,300 arrivals so far and the potential to receive as many as 300,000 refugees over the next six months. Sudanese refugees arrive in Egypt after a perilous journey through desert roads and a lengthy wait at the border, which typically takes several days. They are in dire need of food, water, shelter, essential items, healthcare, and psychosocial support.
HI has been monitoring the arrival of new refugees from Sudan over the past two weeks and is now preparing to launch an emergency intervention with some local partners to respond to their urgent basic needs and to support the most vulnerable members of their host communities. We estimate that 25% of Sudanese refugees have a disability, making it essential for the humanitarian response to be inclusive.
"Most of the Sudanese refugees are in Aswan, the main city in Egypt once you cross the border, and surrounding areas. They are primarily composed of elderly people, women, and children. We are beginning to see people settling in the streets and occupying school buildings, as affordable and available accommodation is becoming scarce. The pressure on the host community is increasing, resulting in rising prices and strain on services. The situation is worrisome, and humanitarian aid needs to be organized quickly", says Caroline Dauber, HI Country Manager in Egypt.
The number of refugees at the border is increasing. They have no access to food, water, or sanitation facilities. Currently, only the Egyptian Red Crescent intervenes. The most urgent needs are in this area.
In Aswan, people also require access to food, water, medical assistance, and shelter. We are observing more and more people who are traumatized. They have experienced fighting, lost family members during their trip, and suffer from a lot of anxiety and stress.
In Aswan, and in the Greater Cairo Region, we can propose activities through partnership to local organisations:
As we observe that between 20 and 25% of the refugees have disabilities, we propose to advise and train humanitarian organizations to better include people with disabilities in their emergency response - an activity towards the humanitarian community that HI almost systematically proposes in emergency situations and is well appreciated.
Our envisioned budget is €2,000,000.00.
Handicap International (Humanity & Inclusion) in Egypt has been assisting refugees (including those from Sudan), migrants, and host communities for years through the following projects:
Handicap International in Egypt has recently started a new project that will complement the activities mentioned above, including:
On 15 April 2023, armed clashes erupted suddenly between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), due to power struggles between their commanders. Since then, clashes have turned to all-out conflict in several cities, plunging the country into chaos.
Hundreds of persons have died and thousands of persons have been injured, with new casualties every day. The United Nations estimate that more than 100,000 refugees have already fled to neighbouring countries and that as many as 800,000 might flee Sudan in the coming weeks.