Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office


Operation: Opération: Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office



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Key Figures

2017 year-end results
90% of Central African primary school-aged children were enrolled in schools
85% of Burundian primary school-aged children were enrolled in schools
80% of CAR households were living in adequate dwellings
58% of primary school-aged children were enrolled in primary education
51% of South Sudanese households were living in adequate dwellings
1,470 internally displaced households received core relief items
2018 planning figures
100% of the urban refugees will have access to reproductive health and HIV services
80% of Central African refugee children will be enrolled in primary education 
80%  Congolese returnees (18-59 years) will have their own business and/or be self-employed for more than 12 months
5,000 community sanitary facilities/latrines will be constructed for South Sudanese refugees
2,000 Central African households will receive multipurpose cash grants or vouchers
3 schools will receive maintenance support 

People of Concern Personnes relevant de la compétence du HCR

Increase in
2017 5,145,780
2016 3,321,847
2015 2,701,921


[["Refugees",537928],["Asylum-seekers",810],["IDPs",4351376],["Returned IDPs",255635],["Returned refugees",31]]
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Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office

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2017 {"categories":[2013,2014,2015,2016,2017,2018],"budget":[196.62741826,196.1200685,207.82899884,209.71033616,234.31289884,200.97890137],"expenditure":[80.44026164,82.89793508,81.24654248,73.23818483,88.617526,null]} {"categories":[2013,2014,2015,2016,2017,2018],"p1":[84.29544165,71.90779198,91.41104086,103.12806996,136.71162641,109.91443737],"p2":[1.76370934,1.64748057,2.69677526,1.923405,1.94889796,1.28578031],"p3":[24.57256446,47.12909081,38.54665211,29.81920304,29.873246,11.1438503],"p4":[85.99570281,75.43570514,75.17453061,74.83965816,65.77912847,78.63483339]} {"categories":[2013,2014,2015,2016,2017,2018],"p1":[48.3141246,50.09923907,57.35459999,58.9382084,65.13414131,null],"p2":[1.40268682,0.79246867,0.72133408,0.36397887,0.48065037,null],"p3":[12.22476921,16.65508797,10.2698795,3.24760875,3.79706059,null],"p4":[18.49868101,15.35113937,12.90072891,10.68838881,19.20567373,null]}
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  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018

Operational context

The general situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) continued to deteriorate. Intercommunal conflict in the Kasai region displaced thousands of people within the DRC and resulted in their movement to Angola. A sharp deterioration in the situation in the Kasai region, South Kivu and Tanganyika provinces led to the declaration of an Inter-Agency Standing Committee system-wide Level -3 emergency in October 2017 and drastically increased internal displacement. By the end of 2017, some 4.5 million people were displaced internally —including 1.9 million displaced people in 2017 alone—and more than 685,000 Congolese refugees—the majority of them women and children—were seeking protection in neighbouring countries. Uganda and Zambia registered some 47,000 and 17,000 new arrivals respectively in 2017. UNHCR increased its presence in the DRC and neighbouring countries, focusing on protection and lifesaving assistance.

In parallel, the DRC continued to receive refugee flows from Burundi, the Central African Republic (CAR) and South Sudan. New arrivals from CAR and South Sudan preferred to not relocate to existing camps. However, UNHCR is implementing an out of camp approach in the DRC.

The implementation of the comprehensive strategy for durable solutions for Rwandan refugees continued to be stalled due to challenges with biometric registration, and the lack of the option for Rwandans to integrate locally.

Population trends

The number of refugees in the DRC increased from just under 452,000 at the beginning of the year to more than 537,000 at the end of 2017, representing an increase of 36 per cent. The IDP figure increased drastically from 2.2 million to 4.5 million IDPs during the year.

Key achievements

  • With UNHCR’s support, the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) adopted a ministerial declaration and plan of action on the eradication of statelessness, which will pave the way for significant reforms in ICGLR’s Member States.
  • 18,075 Rwandan refugees repatriated voluntarily, representing the highest number in the past five years.
  • 100% of Burundian refugees biometrically registered on an individual basis.
  • 100% of Central African households received basic and domestic items.
  • 100% of South Sudanese living with HIV had access to antiretroviral therapy through the support of the National Programme.

Unmet needs

  • The lack of funds and staff capacity was critical to support IDPs, with gaps in all sectors.
  • Due to lack of resources UNHCR could not identify and refer new Central African refugees living out of the camp.
  • 7,000 South Sudanese families urgently required an appropriate shelter.
  • The gap of latrines across the refugee sites reached more than 9,000.

Working environment

The volatile security situation in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) in late 2016 was further compounded by the delay of the Presidential elections. The ongoing climate of instability in parts of the country could pose serious challenges to UNHCR’s ability to implement the required level of protection and assistance for people of concern in 2017. Military operations in the Kivu region and localized conflicts with armed groups are expected to continue in 2017. Developments in neighbouring countries such as South Sudan and Burundi may also lead to further refugee influxes.
The Government of DRC is providing land for the establishment of refugee camps, as well as contributing to the security in the camps, civil status documentation and registration exercises. Refugee children are able to enroll in schools.

Key priorities

In 2017, UNHCR’s protection strategy will continue to be oriented towards durable solutions while ensuring the centrality of protection in all interventions. The strategy will focus on building self-reliance, with a view to empowering people of concern while strengthening the resilience of entire communities.
In 2017, UNHCR’s operation will focus specifically on:
•    multi-sectoral assistance to camp-based refugees alongside the promotion of alternatives to camps;
•    building self-reliance by supporting livelihood opportunities for refugees and host communities;
•    facilitating durable solutions, including voluntary returns of refugees in DRC and of Congolese refugees in neighbouring countries.
•    Protection monitoring, prevention of and response to SGBV and search for durable solutions for the 1.7 million IDPs in the country.

In the event of a funding shortfall in 2017, primary education for both people of concern and host communities, provision of transitional shelters, medical assistance to SGBV victims, and provision of production kits to people of concern will be affected.