The EU has allocated €181.5 million this year for humanitarian aid in West and Central Africa, as this region continues to face protracted crises driven by conflict and worsened by other factors such as climate change and the global spike in food prices.
New allocations have been announced for Burkina Faso (€25.5 million), Mali (€26 million), Mauritania (€6.5 million), and Central African Republic (€20.5 million), together with a regional allocation of €500 000. These add to the EU funding already pledged for Nigeria (€34 million), Niger (€25 million), Chad (€26.5 million), and Cameroon (€17 million) last month, during the High-Level Conference on the Lake Chad Region held in Niamey.
The announcement was made on the occasion of the EU-ECOWAS ministerial meeting held in Brussels, attended by Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarčič. Up to €111 million of the mentioned budget will benefit ECOWAS members.
The EU’s humanitarian aid in West and Central Africa will cover the following areas:
- Providing life-saving aid to populations displaced by conflict and to hosting communities;
- Supporting victims of human rights violations, including survivors of sexual and gender-based violence and children affected by conflicts;
- Providing food assistance to households and communities most in need, focusing on the lean season and hard-to-reach areas, and treating severe acute undernutrition in children under 5;
- Offering healthcare to populations outside the reach of health authorities and improving access to safe water and sanitation;
- Supporting emergency education for children that are displaced or cannot attend school;
- Enhancing disaster preparedness actions, such as early warning systems and climate resilience measures
In addition, the Commission has already requested an extra allocation of €32 million from the budgetary authorities. If approved, €25 million would be destined to countries within the ECOWAS bloc.