USAID announces additional assistance to mitigate impact of Cote d’Ivoire refugees in Liberia
Today USAID announced that the Office of Food For Peace (FFP) will provide a further $12 million to the UN in response to the ongoing Ivorian refugee crisis.
The U.S. Agency for International Development has already provided some $4.1 million in funding and food aid to the U.N. World Food Program, UNICEF, and several NGOs in Liberia, including $900,000 provided to UNICEF, Equip Liberia and International Rescue Committee to respond to health, nutrition and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) needs of the communities supporting refugees.
A week ago, on March 7th, President Obama signed into effect a presidential memorandum making available $12.6 million provided by the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration. That commitment includes support for the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to provide protection and humanitarian assistance to Ivoirian refugees and IDPs. It also includes support for the WFP to enhance logistical capacity for humanitarian operations in Liberia, and the International Organization for Migration to assist and transport IDPs and individuals fleeing Côte d’Ivoire. Funds will also be provided to select NGOs in Liberia to provide relief and assistance to Ivoirian refugees.
With these latest commitments, the U.S. government will have provided almost $29 million in humanitarian assistance to refugees, host communities, and internally displaced persons in the region.
More than 75,000 refugees have fled Côte d’Ivoire, mainly to Liberia. Hundreds of thousands more are internally displaced in Côte d’Ivoire. The $12 million provided by USAID FFP will be split into $7.5 million for the WFP in Liberia to assist refugees and host communities and $4.5 million for WFP to assist IDPs within Cote d’Ivoire.