European Union External Action

EU launches € 10m (UGX 37b) refugees programme for Uganda

Dinka Dancers Adjumani

Minister for Relief, Disaster Preparedness and Refugees in Uganda, Hon. Hilary Onek and the European Union (EU) Head of Cooperation in Uganda, Michelle Labeeu, on Febraury 23rd, launched the Support Programme for Refugee Settlements and Host Communities in Northern Uganda (SPRS-NU) project worth 10 million Euros, in Adjumani district.

The SPRS-NU programme is part of the European Union Emergency Trust Fund that aims at supporting all aspects of stability and contribute to better migration management. The EUTF also seeks to address the root causes of destabilization, forced displacement and irregular migration in the Horn of Africa.
The programme is designed to promote equal economic opportunities, security and development and therefore dignified co-existence of refugees and host communities in the West Nile districts of Adjumani, Arua and Kiryandongo.

At the launch event, Mr Onek and Ms Labeeu, planted trees in commemoration of the inauguration. The Ambassador of Belgium Mr. Hugo Verbist, and the Head of Austrian Development Agency Mr. Günter Engelits, also planted trees alongside refugees and host community members to signify a dignified co-existence.

In his remarks, Minister Onek noted that Uganda has on its soil almost 1 million refugees and more than 85% of the refugees currently arriving in Uganda are women and children under the age of 18 who lack access to proper shelter, food and health facilities, among other basic necessities.

In her address Ms. Labeeu commended Uganda’s exemplary hospitality and progressive refugee policies.
"Uganda is not alone. Uganda can keep counting on the European Union's support for handling such a challenging endeavor," she said, adding that the EU had taken a decision to add further 10 million Euros to the programme allowing to expand interventions to other effected districts.

SPRS-NU is a 3-year programme implemented through three components:
(i) water and sanitation component, managed by the Austrian Development Agency (ADA);
(ii) Skills development & entrepreneurship training, managed by the Belgian Techincal Cooperation (BTC) Agency; and
(iii) the livelihoods, conflict management, educational and knowledge components, managed by a NGO Consortium, led by the Danish Refugee Council (DRC), and consisting of Save the Children, ZOA & CEFORD.

This programme is in line with the Refugee and Host Population Empowerment (Re-HOPE) strategy and adheres to the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF). This involvement also underlines the EU's commitment to work closely not only with Government of the Republic of Uganda, but also with other development partners. By doing so, effective, sustainable and coordinated programmes for the benefit of both host communities and refugees in Northern Uganda are ensured.

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