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Most vulnerable Afghans being helped to survive winter

Most vulnerable Afghans being helped to survive winter

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Dec 24, 2018 - 15:46

Pajhwok

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The UN refugee agency UNHCR is providing life-saving assistance to some 150,000 most vulnerable families across Afghanistaninfo-icon to help them survive the harsh winter.

As of Monday (Dec 24) over 58,000 of the most vulnerable families have been reached as part of the annual winterization program, a UNHCR statement said.

The families include returnees, internally displaced persons (IDPs), refugees and members of host communities across the country.

UNHCR together with the Afghan Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation (MoRR) and a number of partners are distributing cash assistance to these families in all 34 provinces.

As part of the program, UNHCR and MoRR are now distributing assistance to some 17,500 vulnerable Afghans in Kabul, the statement said.

“Provision of support in the form of unconditional cash assistance, approximately US$200, for identified beneficiaries will help keep them dry and warm while long-term sustainable solutions for protracted displacement are pursued,” said Fathiaa Abdalla, UNHCR’s Representative for Afghanistan.

From 1 November, UNHCR and MoRR and partners jointly identified the most vulnerable to winter conditions, including female heads of household and families without income.

It is expected that some 30,000 individuals in the central region, including Kabul, will receive support to help them get through the harsh winter months.

A total of 620,000 people are estimated countrywide to be in need of assistance this winter.

But humanitarian agencies and the Afghan government will be able to provide over 420,000 individuals (60,000 families) with winterization assistance, leaving a gap of at least 28,000 families in need.

Within this program, UNHCR and its partners will support some 60,000 refugees from Pakistaninfo-icon along with the communities hosting them in Khost and Paktika provinces to ensure they are prepared for the winter.

Over 15,000 tents are also being given to drought-affected IDPs as part of a coordinated humanitarian response.

The distribution of family tents to some 480 displaced families in Herat province is ongoing while it is expected to begin in Badghis province this week.

More than 21,000 drought affected families are currently displaced through outthe western region.

Most of the displaced families currently live in displacement sites in Herat City and in sites scattered in and around the provincial capital of Badghis, Qala-i-Naw.

So far this year, a total of 316,470 people have been verified as being displaced by conflict in 2018, according to OCHA’s Displacement Tracking System (DTS).

Overall, the number of people displaced so far this year is nearly 35 percent less than the same period last year (485,310).

pr/ma

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