UNHCR said in a statement yesterday that the funding will support refugee programmes in the country as Tanzania hosts refugees mainly from DRC and Burundi residing in three camps in Kigoma region.
“This funding from the Federal Republic of Germany comes at a very critical time when we need to step up our support for refugees and the host communities in the three refugee camps in Kigoma,” said Chansa Kapaya, UNHCR Representative to Tanzania.
“I am very grateful to the Government and the people of Germany for their unwavering support for refugees hosted in Tanzania,” he said.
She said the funds will enable UNHCR continue to support the Government of Tanzania in its obligations as an asylum country to ensure that refugees have the basic and essential services such as shelter, education, healthcare, sanitation and hygiene.
The monies will also be spent for the prevention sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV).
It is envisioned that the generous contribution of the German government will also be used to support refugee access to alternative energy sources and to support environmental initiatives in the refugee hosting region, the UN agency noted.
Jörg Herrera, Chargé d’Affaires of Germany in Tanzania said his country was happy and proud to support UNHCR in its invaluable work to meet the needs of refugees from Burundi and the DRC hosted in refugee camps in Western Tanzania.
“At the same time we commend Tanzania for its tremendous effort in receiving and providing shelter for refugees from these two neighboring countries for many years.”
Germany has been steadfast in its partnership with UNHCR and since 2017 it has contributed some 39.2 million euros in support of families forced to flee from their homes in Burundi and the DRC.
With limited opportunities to earn a living, refugees in Tanzania are almost totally dependent on humanitarian assistance. More funding is thus required to meet the ever-growing needs.
Currently, UNHCR operations in Tanzania require $126 million and with this contribution from Germany only just over a third of that figure is available, agency officials affirmed.
Tanzania currently hosts approximately 278,000 refugees and asylum seekers from the two countries. About 85 per cent of them live in the three refugee camps in Kigoma region where this assistance is directed.