Liberia: Quarter of a million people need aid in 2012
The UN and its humanitarian partners have appealed for US$121 million to help Liberia cope with the large numbers of Ivorian refugees in the country’s impoverished south-east region.
More than 120,000 Ivorian refugees who fled post-election violence in Côte d’Ivoire now live in Liberia’s four eastern counties: Nimba, Grand Gedeh, River Gee and Maryland.
When the Ivorian conflict broke out following disputed presidential election results in December 2010, about 200,000 Ivorians sought refuge in Liberia. Although tens of thousands of these people have returned to Côte d’Ivoire, those who remain in Liberia need food, water, shelter and basic social services.
As many as 140,000 Liberians living in rural communities in the four counties have shared meagre resources and limited social services with the refugees.
“Even though we are no longer in the same situation as we were last year, there are pressing needs which still require our urgent attention,” said Moustapha Soumaré, Humanitarian Coordinator in Liberia. “This goes both for the Ivorian refugees and Liberian people who, despite their own vulnerability, have kindly opened their homes and hearts to their neighbours.”
The funding will provide food, water, health care, shelter and basic education to more than a quarter of a million Ivorian refugees and Liberians. It will also support livelihoods through job-skills training, along with the distribution of seeds and farming tools. There are also plans to help more Ivorians return home when they are ready.