Central Africa and the Great Lakes

Operational information on the Central Africa and the Great Lakes subregion is presented below. A summary of this can also be downloaded in PDF format. This subregion covers the following countries:

Subregion: Central Africa and the Great Lakes


Latest update of camps and office locations 21  Nov  2016. By clicking on the icons on the map, additional information is displayed.

  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017

Budgets and Expenditure in Subregion Central Africa and the Great Lakes

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2015 {"categories":[2012,2013,2014,2015,2016,2017],"budget":[400.278583747,397.11091767,503.32381366,699.501085209,642.30670313,685.55069288],"expenditure":[177.86138431,186.81027121,236.15435243,274.23980882,null,null]} {"categories":[2012,2013,2014,2015,2016,2017],"p1":[253.366748687,239.84552114,307.9703963,505.440937742,458.31266865,529.52141185],"p2":[3.33793253,8.68566536,2.80964228,3.730164264,4.73713069,3.10447697],"p3":[81.6064711,55.78047991,64.77744622,54.587607553,66.33196742,62.63241923],"p4":[61.96743143,92.79925126,127.76632886,135.74237565,112.92493637,90.29238483]} {"categories":[2012,2013,2014,2015,2016,2017],"p1":[132.43699158,142.49521679,175.78113489,218.41039125,null,null],"p2":[1.3034486,2.14283547,1.29948582,1.06479773,null,null],"p3":[14.97260691,18.38606284,22.28936622,17.41356558,null,null],"p4":[29.14833722,23.78615611,36.7843655,37.35105426,null,null]}
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People of Concern - 2017 [projected]

[["Refugees",1075719],["Asylum-seekers",17227],["IDPs",1900000],["Returned IDPs",940000],["Returned refugees",154776],["Stateless",120000],["Others of concern",234849]]
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Operational Environment and Strategy

Despite being one of the world’s richest regions in terms of natural resources, Central Africa and the Great Lakes subregion continues to be highly unstable. Even though certain countries have been relatively stable, situations within the DRC, Burundi and the Central African Republic have caused significant level of displacement throughout the subregion. In addition to the relatively recent refugee crisis in Burundi that forced close to 325,000 people to flee their country since 2015, the situation in South Sudan has added to an already complex displacement climate, triggering new arrivals to the Central African Republic (CAR) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

UNHCR will continue to closely monitor the situation in light of upcoming elections in the DRC, as it could lead to subsequent population movements. The elections that were due to take place in November 2016 have been postponed until April 2018, causing friction amongst the majority of opposition parties. Internal displacement has been significant in the eastern part of the country and a half a million refugees have fled to neighbouring countries. By September 2016, 1.7 million people had been internally displaced in the DRC. 

In December 2013, hundreds of thousands of people were forced to flee their homes as violence spread across the Central African Republic. Currently, over 450,000 Central African refugees are hosted in Cameroon, Chad, the DRC, and the Republic of Congo. Despite a relatively peaceful election in February 2016, the security situation remains volatile and over 384,000 people are still internally displaced inside the Central African Republic. 

Efforts to resolve the long-standing Rwandan refugee situation in the region are made within the framework of the Comprehensive Solutions Strategy for Rwandan Refugees. The Strategy, issued in October 2009, includes the promotion of voluntary repatriation; the pursuit of local integration and the continued international protection for those unable to return to Rwanda for protection related reasons. UNHCR’s Representative in Kinshasa, who is also acting as Regional Refugee Coordinator for the Burundi Situation, is tasked with streamlining coordination efforts between the different operations. 

Child protection activities as well as preventing and responding to sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) remains a top priority for UNHCR in the region in 2017. Basic needs, such as health care, education for children and livelihood/self-reliance activities, will also remain priorities in 2017. Furthermore, UNHCR will continue to pursue its efforts to secure durable solution for both refugee and IDP populations. 
UNHCR will continue to lead the protection cluster for IDPs (where activated) in conducting protection monitoring, tracking and mapping spontaneous returns in main areas of return across the subregion.

Restricted humanitarian access and logistical constraints constitute major obstacles for UNHCR in the subregion. UNHCR and partners are facing difficulties in reaching the most vulnerable populations, especially in eastern parts of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and in the Central African Republic. 

Global attention has largely shifted away from the subregion due to the multiple high-profile emergency operations worldwide. Funding constraints result in reduced operational capacity and limitations in UNHCR’s ability to fulfil its protection responsibilities. 

Response and Implementation

Operations in BurundiCameroonCentral African RepublicCongo (Republic of the), the Democratic Republic of the CongoRwanda and the United Republic of Tanzania are presented in separate chapters. For other countries where UNHCR operates in the subregion, please see below.
As of August 2016, Gabon is hosting some 910 refugees and some 1,990 asylum-seekers, from CAR, Chad, the DRC and other countries. UNHCR is supporting the Government in restructuring the refugee status determination (RSD) procedure, while continuing efforts to secure durable solutions, including voluntary repatriation. Local integration prospects are limited in Gabon, due to the high cost of a residence permit and the lengthy and expensive process of naturalization. UNHCR will continue to monitor the situation following post-electoral violence that broke out in September 2016. 

2017 Budget for Central Africa and the Great Lakes | USD

Operation Pillar 1
Refugee programme
Pillar 2
Stateless programme
Pillar 3
Reintegration projects
Pillar 4
IDP projects
Burundi 29,424,4107,07504,384,05133,815,536
Cameroon 87,796,0621,148,50405,300,26394,244,829
Central African Republic 24,291,641014,762,56514,030,23253,084,438
Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office 136,711,6261,948,89829,873,24665,779,128234,312,899
Republic of the Congo 27,843,95700798,71028,642,667
Rwanda 96,813,08707,565,0940104,378,181
United Republic of Tanzania 126,640,629010,431,5140137,072,143
Total 529,521,4123,104,47762,632,41990,292,385685,550,693

2017 Voluntary Contributions to Central Africa and the Great Lakes | USD

Earmarking / Donor Pillar 1
Refugee programme
Pillar 3
Reintegration projects
Pillar 4
IDP projects
Central Africa and the Great Lakes overall
Luxembourg 000523,013 523,013
Private donors in Canada 0001,633 1,633
Private donors in Germany 000421,558 421,558
Private donors in Italy 000427 427
Private donors in Switzerland 000556 556
Sweden 000553,159 553,159
Central Africa and the Great Lakes overall subtotal 0001,500,345 1,500,345
France 000434,311 434,311
United States of America 0003,000,000 3,000,000
Burundi subtotal 0003,434,311 3,434,311
Canada 0001,188,201 1,188,201
Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) 968,9650731,0370 1,700,002
France 625,733000 625,733
Japan 1,632,6500300,0005,350 1,938,000
Private donors in Spain 000530,786 530,786
Private donors in the Netherlands 1,335,0690070,133 1,405,203
Republic of Korea 0002,000,000 2,000,000
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland 1,216,545000 1,216,545
United States of America 0009,100,000 9,100,000
Cameroon subtotal 5,778,96201,031,03712,894,470 19,704,470
Central African Republic
Common Humanitarian Fund in Central African Republic 00750,0000 750,000
France 651,466000 651,466
Germany 0002,206,617 2,206,617
Japan 697,6801,615,665270,6550 2,584,000
Private donors in Sweden 0004,439 4,439
United States of America 400,000004,800,000 5,200,000
Central African Republic subtotal 1,749,1461,615,6651,020,6557,011,056 11,396,521
Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office
Belgium 398,088000 398,088
Canada 000792,135 792,135
France 000542,888 542,888
Japan 2,584,000000 2,584,000
Private donors in Italy 000187 187
Private donors in Spain 00079,001 79,001
Private donors in the Republic of Korea 39,583000 39,583
Private donors in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland 54,938000 54,938
Private donors in the United States of America 210,23300299,575 509,808
Sweden 0001,106,317 1,106,317
United States of America 6,200,0000020,200,000 26,400,000
Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office subtotal 9,486,8420023,020,102 32,506,945
Republic of the Congo
United States of America 0002,700,000 2,700,000
Republic of the Congo subtotal 0002,700,000 2,700,000
African Union 100,000000 100,000
Canada 000396,067 396,067
IGF The Global Fund 2,090,890000 2,090,890
Private donors in Qatar 1,103,445000 1,103,445
Private donors in Switzerland 000379,378 379,378
Private donors in the United States of America 00026,384 26,384
United States of America 0009,800,000 9,800,000
Rwanda subtotal 3,294,3350010,601,829 13,896,164
United Republic of Tanzania
Canada 000950,561 950,561
Denmark 1,000,000000 1,000,000
France 150,000000 150,000
Private donors in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland 67,569000 67,569
Private donors in the United States of America 582,162000 582,162
United States of America 00010,900,000 10,900,000
United Republic of Tanzania subtotal 1,799,7310011,850,561 13,650,292
Total 22,109,0161,615,6652,051,69273,012,674 98,789,046