Flash Appeal for Kenya 2006

16 October 2006

The rapid territorial gains being made by the Islamic Courts Union (ICU) in Somalia and the precarious strength of the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) based in Baidoa have added greater unpredictability to the already precarious political situation.  The perception of a wider civil war in Somalia has resulted in a steadily increasing refugee influx into north-eastern Kenya.   Intra- and inter-clan fighting, the impact of drought, and increasing destitution are some of the complementary causes of this refugee migration.

Refugees are coming from Mogadishu, Baidoa and Kismayo.  From January through August 2006, 24,000 refugees (an average of 100 per day) had entered the Dadaab refugee complex in north-eastern Kenya.  September saw a much more rapid refugee migration, with arrivals averaging 300 per day.  In October, the influx has accelerated to an average of 800 per day.  However, on 4th-5th October, over 2000 refugees entered Kenya, and on 10th October over 1400 refugees arrived.  The Somali population in the three Dadaab refugee camps now amounts to 160,000.

In August 2006, a United Nations inter-agency group (UNHCR, WFP, UNICEF, WHO, UNFPA, OCHA) under the leadership of the UN Resident Coordinator developed an emergency response plan to manage the increasing refugee numbers.  Two scenarios were developed – a most likely case of 50,000 new Somali refugees in 2006 and a worst-case scenario of 80,000.

This flash appeal outlines the need for rapid and expanded humanitarian assistance to the refugee population.  With the current daily influx of refugees it is increasingly likely that at least 80,000 new Somali refugees will have entered Kenya in 2006.  Health and water services are severely stretched and there is a high incidence of child malnutrition and substantial risk of disease outbreaks.

As a result of this worsening emergency, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, in September 2006, granted the sum of US$ 3.5 million[1] from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to UNHCR, WFP and UNICEF.  This assistance allowed the start of a multi-sectoral relief response, including improved health care and water delivery, and the continuation of food aid provision.

The CERF assistance has allowed the UN agencies and NGOs to expand their response, but more funds are required to manage the worsening crisis.  In this Flash Appeal, the priority needs will be food aid and the expansion of health, nutrition and water provision, along with the continuation of protection assistance including reception and transportation of refugees from the border points to Dadaab.  The current camps in Dadaab can only absorb 50,000 additional refugees, so a fourth camp will be needed for an expected influx up to 80,000 people.  Of particular importance in the health sector is the need for an emergency immunization programme at the main border points.  There have been 30 cases of polio so far in Somalia in 2006.  Kenya is polio-free, so it is of vital importance that all new arrivals be vaccinated immediately for both polio and measles.  Food aid support is essential given the emergency malnutrition rates and the four-month time lag between new contributions and food arriving in the camps. 

UNHCR will lead the emergency response in collaboration with WFP, UNICEF, UNFPA and WHO.  These agencies are supported by CARE in the food, water, sanitation and education sectors and by GTZ, NCCK and HI in the health sector.

This Flash Appeal seeks a total of $35,252,275 to cover activities for up to six months.  The commitment of $3,500,000 from the Central Emergency Response Fund leaves funding requirements for this appeal of $31,752,275.


[1]All dollar figures in this document are United States dollars.  Funding for this appeal should be reported to the Financial Tracking Service (FTS, fts@un.org), which will display the appeal’s requirements and funding, continually updated, on the CAP 2006 page.   


Document History

16 October 2006

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