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Rapid humanitarian response in Ethiopia

The devastating conflict in the North Shewa Zone of the Amhara region has resulted in the displacement of approximately 500,000 people. As the humanitarian crisis grows, men, women, boys and girls face grave risks such as food shortages, risk of sexual violence & abuse, psychological trauma and displacement among others. To help people whose lives and livelihoods have been shattered by conflict, Terre des Hommes Netherlands is implementing a rapid response project, funded by IRC/USAID to provide comprehensive child protection services, SGBV prevention and response services as well as psychosocial support to the victims of conflict in the North Shewa Zone of Amhara region.

Girma Amentie

Programme manager Ethiopia:

"We have restored hope. Quite a high number of women and children affected by conflict are benefiting from our comprehensive emergency responses."

Background

The conflict in the North Shewa zone in Ethiopia has claimed many lives, resulting in massive destruction of homes and infrastructure in addition to impacting the safety and well-being of hundreds of thousands of people. Educational institutions have been damaged and internally displaced children do not have access to education services. Furthermore, the conflict has exposed communities, especially women and children, to serious protection risks such as Gender-Based Violence, abuse and family separation. 

A recent multi-sectoral assessment conducted by UNOCHA revealed the high prevalence of gender-based violence (GBV), lack of child protection (CP) as well as access to psychosocial needs (PSS). While the majority of the internally displaced persons (IDPs) are living with the host communities, those who are living in collective centres, especially girls are exposed to gender-based violence due to overcrowding and inadequate shelters. Some girls who are displaced in towns are at high risk of sexual exploitation, forced labour, abuse, and trafficking.

Many children experience stress and GBV risks when fleeing from their original homes. Also, some of the survivors have suffered psychological trauma due to the loss of family members, close relatives and property; coupled with challenges within the IDP sites. Some children/parents do not know where their parents/ children are living, while others are not sure whether they are alive. All these are causing psychological distress and unrest among the displaced children. The current situation and the lack of humanitarian assistance has forced the communities to use negative coping strategies. An example is the involvement of some women in “transactional sex” which exposes them to health risks.

Goals

This humanitarian response intends to offer integrated prevention and response services to GBV victims, child protection as well as psychosocial support to the most affected displaced people in North Shewa zone, Ethiopia.

Read more about humanitarian action

Approach

With the launch of the 6-month humanitarian response project, Terre des Hommes Netherlands offers immediate protection services in Ataye, Debre Berhan, Efrata, Shewa Robit and Ansokia. 

Access to essential GBV prevention and response services

Access to essential child protection and response services.

Access to psychological support

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Terre des Hommes Netherlands will work closely with key stakeholders including Government departments of Women and Social  Affairs, Disaster Preparedness and Prevention Center, Education, Health, Justice, Offices at Zonal and Woreda levels; and Civil Society Organizations working in the intervention areas.

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