Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office


Operation: Opération: Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office



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Key Figures

2018 year-end results
100% of refugee children under 12 months old issued birth certificates by the authorities
80% of Burundian refugee households live in adequate dwellings
75% of South Sudanese refugees were registered on an individual basis
50% of IDPs were reunited with family members with the assistance of UNHCR
76,000 Rwandan refugees were biometrically registered by the end of 2018, including some 35,420 who were registered during the year
8,880 refugee children from the CAR were enrolled in primary education
2019 planning figures
100% of Burundian refugees will have access to primary healthcare
100% of Central African refugees with intention to return voluntarily will be supported
80% of refugee children from the Central African Republic are enrolled in secondary education
80% of IDPs will be living in adequate dwellings
12,800 IDP  households will
receive cash grants for education

People of Concern Personnes relevant de la compétence du HCR

Decrease in
2018 5,059,095
2017 5,145,780
2016 3,321,847


[["Refugees",529748],["Asylum-seekers",5854],["IDPs",4516865],["Returned refugees",6628]]
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Democratic Republic of the Congo Regional Office

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2018 {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"budget":[196.1200685,207.82899884,209.71033616,234.31289884,198.877860264,150.07496705],"expenditure":[82.89793508,81.24654248,73.23818483,88.617526,91.8951266,null]} {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"p1":[71.90779198,91.41104086,103.12806996,136.71162641,107.81339627,97.47881999],"p2":[1.64748057,2.69677526,1.923405,1.94889796,1.28578031,1.056962],"p3":[47.12909081,38.54665211,29.81920304,29.873246,11.1438503,4.84230001],"p4":[75.43570514,75.17453061,74.83965816,65.77912847,78.634833384,46.69688505]} {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"p1":[50.09923907,57.35459999,58.9382084,65.13414131,56.67529834,null],"p2":[0.79246867,0.72133408,0.36397887,0.48065037,0.40466331,null],"p3":[16.65508797,10.2698795,3.24760875,3.79706059,0.5195974,null],"p4":[15.35113937,12.90072891,10.68838881,19.20567373,34.29556755,null]}
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  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018
  • 2019

Operational environment

The operational environment in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) deteriorated in 2018 due to increased unrest in the east of the country, as well as an outbreak of Ebola.  In North Kivu, violent conflict and human rights violations, including attacks on civilians, an increase in sexual and gender-based violence, and targeted killings resulted in mass displacement.
An internal Level 2 emergency was declared in mid-2018 for UNHCR’s response to the situation in Ituri and North Kivu provinces. Despite over 400 Ebola-related deaths, UNHCR ensured the establishment of appropriate prevention measures in refugee and displacement sites and settlements, with no confirmed or suspected cases among refugee populations.
The Office increased the implementation of an alternative to camps approach, including through expanded cash-based interventions despite the difficult operational context.

Population trends

In 2018, the DRC was hosting over 529,000 refugees, mainly from Rwanda (217,000), the Central African Republic (172,000), South Sudan (95,000) and Burundi (43,000).
More than 4.5 million people are internally displaced in the DRC, including some 2.7 million children. Furthermore, at the end of December 2018, there were some 815,000 refugees from the DRC living in neighbouring countries.

Key achievements

  • Code of conduct and protection from sexual exploitation and abuse trainings were held in 19 offices for over 300 (77%) personnel. More than 600 implementing partners, police officers, and personnel working in UNHCR premises (cleaners and guards) benefitted from similar trainings.
  • In Kasai, a module on protection from sexual exploitation and abuse was introduced into all trainings with implementing partners, beneficiaries, and authorities – reaching over 400 people.
  • UNHCR facilitated the participation of IDPs and returnees in provincial development planning, shifting protection monitoring to a community-based model, with support available for local initiatives.
  • Through its leadership of the protection cluster and the shelter and CCCM taskforces, UNHCR facilitated opportunities for more connection with national (Government and civil society) actors.
  • Efforts were made to strengthen the integration of people of concern – especially urban refugees – within national systems and the national development plan.  

Unmet needs

A lack of effective Government services impacted the implementation of alternatives to camps and the reintegration of displaced communities.

Insecurity prevailed in many areas, limiting UNHCR’s access to people of concern.

The delayed arrival of staff and resources for the IDP emergency in 2017-2018 led to delayed implementation, with some programming remained disjointed and unpredictable at year’s end. 

Working environment

The socio-political situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has been relatively tense since the second part of 2016. President Kabila, who completed his second term in December 2016, has been authorized by the Constitutional Court to remain in power until a new president is elected.
The solving of political disagreements and elections will presumably benefit the work of the Government on a number of major issues of relevance to UNHCR, including the comprehensive solutions strategy for Rwandan refugees; durable solutions and adoption of a national law for IDPs and the accession to the two Statelessness Conventions of 1954 and 1961.
The MONUSCO operation is likely to further scale down in 2018, which could have an impact on joint efforts with the Congolese Army to contain or eradicate armed groups.
Government officials are committed to include issues related to UNHCR’s people of concern in major strategic tools, including the priority actions plan and the strategic document on growth and reduction of poverty. It is important to strengthen the role of the Government in IDP protection in order for them to take the lead.
Working in accordance with the Refugee Coordination Model, UNHCR will continue to lead and coordinate efforts for refugees, while drawing on the support of other Humanitarian Country Team members. In 2018 and 2019, under this model, UNHCR will advocate for durable solutions activities in areas where there are refugees, returnees and IDPs.

Key priorities

In 2018-2020, UNHCR will focus on the search for durable solutions and empowerment of refugees, while gradually reducing its assistance. Humanitarian assistance needs to be complemented by activities to protect and strengthen existing livelihoods, as well as strengthen the resilience of refugees.
UNHCR’s protection and solutions strategy is linked to the three key tiers of the UN System-Wide Strategy for the Protection of Civilians in DRC, including protection through political process, protection from physical violence and establishment of a protective environment.
In 2018, UNHCR will focus on: 
  • Undertaking innovative approaches, such as cash-based interventions. Refugees will build their own shelters, supported by material or cash assistance;
  • Wherever security and other factors permit, settlement of people of concern among the local Congolese population will be facilitated;
  • Rehabilitate health, education, water and sanitation and justice infrastructures in coordination with the Government and development partners;
  • Enrol urban refugees to a health insurance for which they will contribute according to their degree of empowerment;
  • Advocate for the inclusion of refugee children in the national education system.  Integration of the education for refugees into the national school system;
  • Implement income-generating activities (IGA) and microcredit projects to allow refugees to cover the costs of secondary education.
Latest contributions
  • 17-JUL-2019
  • 16-JUL-2019
  • 11-JUL-2019
  • 10-JUL-2019
  • 08-JUL-2019
    European Union
  • Kuwait
  • 05-JUL-2019
  • 04-JUL-2019

    private donors

  • European Union
  • Japan
  • 03-JUL-2019
  • 02-JUL-2019
  • 30-JUN-2019

    private donors

  • Argentina
  • Sweden

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  • Spain
  • Oman

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  • United Arab Emirates

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  • Kuwait

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  • Saudi Arabia

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