The people of the Central African Republic (CAR) have suffered decades of instability and conflict. This December marks one year since fighting that began in the capital triggered widespread violence and a major deterioration in the humanitarian situation.

Today, the situation remains highly unstable, with over half of the population – some 2.6 million people – now thought to be in need of humanitarian aid. More than 423,000 people have fled the country, and around 430,000 are estimated to be internally displaced.

Islamic Relief began working in conflict-torn CAR early this year, and has provided emergency relief and aid for some of the most vulnerable people in the country.

Support for vulnerable children

Children at one of our Child Friendly Spaces in Bangui, CAR.

Children at one of our Child Friendly Spaces in Bangui, CAR.

Islamic Relief supported three Child Friendly Spaces in Bangui, which give conflict-affected children respite from the hostile environment – as well as opportunities to play, learn, and receive psychosocial support.

More than 20 staff have been trained to run the facilities, which welcome on average, over 1,300 children each day. Nearly 1,400 children have accessed additional support through the ‘listening centres’ at each Child Friendly Space.

Over 200 young people take part in nine discussion groups set up at the Child Friendly Spaces. They explore key topics such as social cohesion, child rights, sex education and HIV and Aids.

Scores of local people have come together in community based groups. Supported by specialist training, group members work closely with our staff to identify children at risk and encourage parents to send their children to the centres. They also run awareness campaigns on the protection risks facing children and peace and reconciliation – reaching up to 10,000 people.

Emergency assistance and recovery

Islamic Relief teamed up with Catholic Relief Services to provide farming families with the essential items necessary to improve their food security. Families in Boda, Boganangone, and Ngotto village, all in Lobaye prefecture, are benefitting.

The ongoing project is distributing more than 1,400 toolkits – including watering cans and hoes – and 1,600 packages of vegetable seeds to enable local people to grow food for themselves.

Islamic Relief food distributions provided a lifeline for displaced families.

Islamic Relief food distributions provided a lifeline for displaced families.

Food and other essential supplies

Thousands of Muslim and non-Muslim families benefitted from a project which was delivered with the International Organisation for Migration and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. Providing food aid for communities in Boda, when the scheme was completed 12,000 food parcels had been distributed – giving 3,000 vulnerable Muslim and non-Muslim families weekly rations.

In addition, Islamic Relief provided 1,000 Muslim and non-Muslim families in Bangui with a foodpack at Eid. Filled with essential staples such as pasta, rice, sardines, tomatoes and tea, the parcels were designed to last up to a week.

In addition, Islamic Relief is shortly to begin a joint project with Catholic Relief Services to provide displaced people and host communities in Boda with essential items including firewood, blankets, mosquito nets, kitchen sets and fabric for clothing.

Islamic Relief is working with partners in CAR and through our offices in nearby countries, to provide vital humanitarian aid to those affected by violence. We are also committed to supporting inter-faith efforts to secure lasting peace. Support our work: donate today.