8 Sep 2014
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Since January 2014, the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) has allocated US$11 million to humanitarian partners for life-saving relief in Central African Republic (CAR). In its most recent intervention, which has been partially funded by CERF, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) distributed more than half a million mosquito bed nets that will protect thousands of vulnerable people from malaria after the heavy August rains.

Months of political crisis and instability led to deadly violence and aggravated humanitarian needs in the country over the past year. More than 174,900 people are internally displaced while some 416,400 people sought refuge in neighbouring countries. UN agencies estimate that 2.5 million people, almost half of the population of CAR, are in urgent need of assistance.

In addition to the already challenging living conditions, heavy rains in August threatened a surge of malaria, a leading killer of children under 5 in CAR. According to UNICEF, nearly 460,000 people suffer from malaria every year in CAR.

To protect families from malaria and prevent more infections, UNICEF and partners distributed more than half a million mosquito bed nets in a single month, reaching every home in Bangui.

“Rains are pouring down every day here", says UNICEF CAR Representative Souleymane Diabaté. “Courageous volunteers have been working every day in a volatile environment to provide families the protection they need from this deadly disease,” he adds.

More distributions are planned throughout the country in the coming months.

In 2014, CERF disbursed $2.3 million to UNICEF for the provision of emergency health services, water, sanitation, hygiene, and nutrition to people in CAR. Besides allocating emergency grants to UN agencies like UNICEF that provide assistance to people in need in CAR, CERF also provided $13.7 million for response in the neighbouring countries hosting refugees from CAR – Cameroon, Chad, Congo and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Read more about UNICEF response in CAR here.