23 November 2021
UN Hopes to Enhance Support for Refugees and Host Communities
United Nations Heads and Representatives of UN Agencies in the United Republic of Tanzania recently visited the Kigoma region and several programme sites supported by the UN over the last few years. The UN has a strong presence in the region through a programme implemented jointly by 16 UN agencies since 2017. The Kigoma Joint Programme (KJP) supports the regional and district government authorities to accelerate the development of refugee-hosting communities. The KJP has seven thematic areas: youth and women’s economic empowerment, violence against women and children (VAWC); water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH); agriculture; and health, HIV and nutrition. In parallel, UN Agencies also provide services in the camps to refugees who are dependent on humanitarian assistance. Led by UNHCR, UN Agencies and implementing partners provide vital services to refugees and asylum-seekers for food security and nutrition, protection, shelter, health and education. UN Resident Coordinator, Mr. Zlatan Milisic, highlighted that “As the UN, we have a responsibility to protect the rights and well-being of refugees, and we thank the Government and People of Tanzania for hosting them.” He added that “We recognise that there is a need to support the communities hosting refugees and, through the KJP, UN agencies are jointly supporting the government’s efforts to improve the livelihoods of communities in Kigoma. When the programme started in 2017, Kigoma was the last-ranking region in socio-economic indicators in the country. According to the review issued in 2020, Kigoma outperformed five other regions in some respects. We are thankful to all the stakeholders, including Government and our development partners, who have made the programme possible. The KJP currently runs till July of 2022. We are hopeful to continue expanding our partnerships for Phase Two of the KJP and continued delivery of services in the refugee camps. Over the last several days, we have visited the refugee camps and a variety of KJP activities to see how we can further strengthen coordination of humanitarian and development activities to address the needs of refugees and their hosts in an integrated manner.” The UN Resident Coordinator spoke at Muzye Maternity Ward in Kasulu District, which the UN constructed through the KJP. The maternity ward is one of several KJP initiatives the UN leaders visited during the mission. Other KJP sites and beneficiaries that were seen this time included the UN-constructed Police Gender and Children’s desk, a women’s savings group and a solarised water supply system at the Kigoma Grand School. The delegation also visited Nduta Refugee Camp in Kibondo Region and Nyarugusu Refugee Camp in Kasulu Region, where they met with government officials, refugee leaders and representatives of women, elderly, youth and persons living with disabilities. They also got to see first-hand some of the services delivered to refugees, including education and health. The programme also included a visit to the Makere Centre, which coordinates the resettlement process of refugees to third party countries. The KJP has been funded through the generous support of the Norwegian Government, Irish Aid, Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), and core funds of UN Agencies. The Tanzania refugee operation is currently 44 per cent funded and is supported by the international community.