A major blaze ripped through the Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh on March 22. More than 40,000 people were directly affected and lost their shelters. Eleven people died and more than 550 others were injured, according to initial reports. Humanity & Inclusion teams deployed to assist the most vulnerable.
Humanity & Inclusion has worked in the Rohingya camps for eight years (since 2013). As the team assessed the situation, it focused on the needs of the camp’s most vulnerable members, including people with disabilities, pregnant women, and older people. They worked to determine the needs of disaster-affected families and identify unaccompanied and separated children. In the first 48 hours after the disaster, the team reached 500 people.The fire left many families without a roof over their heads, or even a change of clothes. Affected Rohingya need hygiene kits, mosquito nets, blankets and cooking utensils. The mobility aids previously supplied to families by Humanity & Inclusion donors were mostly burnt or destroyed. The camp’s organization has been affected, leaving families in need of information, and many people with disabilities, older people and children traumatized by the fire require psychological support.
Humanity & Inclusion teams began providing emergency response in the camps the day after the fire. They supplied psychological first aid in one-to-one and group sessions as well as trauma and burns care. They also set up an assistance mechanism for individuals who have lost mobility aids, such as crutches and walking frames. People affected by the disaster were also informed of available services, including protection for children and isolated women. Teams also organized recreational activities for children traumatized by the fire.
Humanity & Inclusion’s logistics teams also helped organize the movement of humanitarian aid for organizations working in the camps. On March 24, Humanity & Inclusion transported more than 15,000 hot meals for disaster-affected people.
In the coming days, this emergency response will expand to include the distribution of cooking and hygiene kits, and other items.