Central African Republic
HI’s program in the Central African Republic supports humanitarian organizations by providing logistical solutions to improve their storage and distribution of humanitarian aid. The program also supports physical rehabilitation centers in the country and implements inclusion and armed violence reduction projects.
An HI physiotherapist works with a young patient in Bambari. | © A. Surprenant / Collectif Item / HI
HI first worked in the Central African Republic from 1994 to 2004, running development programs that included opening the Bangui orthopedic center and setting up the country's only university training course for physical therapy assistants. HI returned to CAR in 2016 to launch logistics platform projects that support and facilitate the delivery of aid by humanitarian organizations throughout the country. The program is currently managing a logistics platform composed of a road and river component and an aerial component.
In September 2018, in partnership with MSF Holland, HI CAR introduced rehabilitation activities at Bambari General Hospital. This project is providing physical rehabilitation care, technical devices and psychosocial support to people with specific needs. In 2022, the program opened an integrated rehabilitation service in Bangassou hospital similar to the one in Bambari.
Since 2022, HI CAR has been implementing stimulation therapy activities for children who have experienced an episode of acute to severe malnutrition. The aim of stimulation therapy is to prevent and reduce developmental delays and disabilities linked to malnutrition and to train parents to stimulate their child.
A Technical Cell for Inclusive Action (CTAI) was set up in Bangui in 2019 to improve the response of humanitarian actors to people with specific needs throughout the country. In 2022, the program also launched a project to improve the living conditions of vulnerable people and people with disabilities.
In 2022, HI launched its first explosive ordnance risk education project in CAR, in the Ouham-Pendé region in the north east of the country. This project is being conducted in conjunction with a mental health and psychosocial support project for populations exposed to the risks of explosive devices or in situations of psychological distress.
The Central African Republic suffers from structural underdevelopment and is one of the poorest countries in the world, with a human development index that places it second to last in the 2018 UNDP Human Development Index.
The country, marked by chronic instability since its independence in 1958, sank into an unprecedented humanitarian, political and security crisis during the third Central African civil war, which began in 2013. After a temporary lull, the violence resumed in December 2020 and continues to this day, causing a significant deterioration in the humanitarian situation.
Insecurity and the resulting recurrent displacement of people have had a serious impact on agricultural production, increasing food prices. At least 75% of the population is dependent on agriculture, resulting in high dependency on food aid.
Since December 2020, the Central African economy has experienced two difficult years due to the combined impact of COVID-19 and the deteriorating security situation.
Number of HI staff members: 160
Program launch date: 1994