Urgently needed relief items for Arakanese refugees
IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation is expanding the scope of its relief efforts for Arakanese refugees.
Arakan, South Asia, Myanmar 04.08.2012

IHH, which has been perpetuating relief efforts on the Myanmar-Bangladesh border, has made a list of the urgently needed relief items in refugee camps where Arakanese people have sought shelter.

IHH teams, which deliver aid to Arakanese Muslims who have just taken refuge in the refugee camps, are making efforts to ensure that the refugees, who left all they have back in Arakan, have a peaceful Ramadan without any health problems.

Carrying out relief efforts in the region for about 14 years, the IHH has delivered cash money and 240,000 tons of food to Arakanese refugees. Now, the foundation is working to carry out permanent projects for the children and women. IHH Emergency Aid Coordinator Recep Güzel has made examinations in the refugee camps of Arakanese Muslims and made a list of urgently needed relief items.

IHH aid teams continue relief efforts in the crisis center in Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar on the Arakan-Myanmar border. Said Demir, IHH representative for Arakan and Bangladesh, has gone to the region and begun to coordinate relief efforts.

The list of urgently needed relief items was made with priority given to the needs of women and children such as food and basic needs. IHH aid teams have begun to take the aid packages to the people in need.

Epidemics hit refugee camps

Giving information about the camps where Arakanese refugees live, Güzel said there are four large camps in Bangladesh, two of which belong to the United Nations, and cases of malaria, diarrhea, anemia and infectious diseases are frequent in the camps due to inappropriate circumstances there.

“Although official figures say there are 20,000 refugees in the refugee camps in Bangladesh, there are as many as 150,000 refugees in Cox’s Bazar region alone. There is insufficient food and space for accommodation in this camp. So, as the IHH, we will expand the scope of our relief efforts and implement middle-term and long-term projects for the refugees,” Güzel said.

List of urgently needed relief items for Arakanese refugees

Güzel said the IHH will deliver food, kitchen appliances, children’s food and cleaning supplies to the Arakanese refugees, adding that there are three types of urgently needed relief items.

“In Bangladesh, those who are in the most difficult situation in the refugee camps where Arakanese people stay are the new comers. We will give priority to help these people who have just arrived at the camps and have nothing to continue living. These people use boats to cross Bangladesh over a river and they are unable to take anything with them other than the clothes they wear. We will deliver relief items to them they need in their daily life. We will continue to provide food in addition to carrying out middle and long-term relief projects. In line with our emergency aid campaign, we prepare multi-purpose packages which will meet the basic needs of a four-member family. Since the region receives a lot of rain, one of the urgent needs of the people is durable, Durable
tarpaulin tents. A durable canvas tent means a house here. Monsoon rains hit the region very strongly nowadays. Another urgently needed relief item is kitchen appliances. Arakanese refugees who seek shelter in Bangladesh are mostly women and children. Since men are mostly killed, there are families with three kids and a mother. Families are unable to take anything with them when they flee. So, kitchen utensils are very much needed. Likewise, cleaning supplies are also needed. Another urgently relief item in the camps is food for children. Children should have sufficient food in the rainy weather and difficult circumstances in the camps not to be sick. So, we pay special importance to these three aid categories.”

Content of an aid package for Arakanese refugees (per family)

1-Nylon canvas

2-Kitchen utensils

Plates (3)

Pots and pans

Spoons (4)

Durable rug

3-For children and women

Milk powder (3 packages, a flour-like local substance)

Biscuits (baby biscuits)

A local clothing for children

Shirt (local style)

Undershirt

Bucket

Pillow (2)

Salwar kamees/Three Pcs for woman

Soap (2)

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