Out Of Site: Building better responses to displacement in the Democratic Republic of the Congo by helping host families

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Despite new peace agreements, continued conflict among and between armed militias and government forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in the last year has seen thousands of new internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the east of the country, many of whom have poured into camps seeking shelter and safety. This is a new development in DRC. Unlike Darfur and Uganda, IDPs in DRC have usually stayed with host families, returning intermittently to their homes, rather than fleeing to refugee-like camps. Around 70 per cent of DRC’s IDPs are still living with host families, but the unprecedented upsurge in the number of those heading towards camps raises difficult questions. Have humanitarian organisations done enough to help IDPs in host families, and the host families themselves? If they have not, have they in fact encouraged the drive to the camps? Most importantly, how can IDPs with host families (as well as those in camps) be adequately assisted?
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  Out of Site Building better responses to displacement in the Democratic Republic of the Congo by helping host  families ` Katherine Haver Oxfam GB in DRC  A report prepared for Oxfam International     OXFAM RESEARCH REPORT    Contents Contents...........................................................................................................................2    Acronyms.........................................................................................................................3   Glossary...........................................................................................................................4   Executive summary ........................................................................................................5   1 Introduction ..................................................................................................................8   2 Displacement and responses in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.............10   3 The role of camps versus other forms of response ...............................................14   4 Survival in displacement: understanding people’s choices..................................16   5 Guidance on decisions to establish camps ............................................................21   6 The hosting experience.............................................................................................24   7 A framework for response to displacement in communities.................................27   8 Conclusions and recommendations ........................................................................33   References.....................................................................................................................36   Notes ..............................................................................................................................39   Out of Site: Building better responses to displacement in the Democratic Republic of Congo by helping host families Oxfam International Research Report, September 2008 2  Acronyms CCCM camp co-ordination, camp management CERF Central Emergency Response Fund CMP Comité de mouvement de population CNDP Congres National pour le Défense de Peuple CPIA Comité Provincial Inter-Agence DfID UK Department for International Development DRC Democratic Republic of the Congo ECHO European Commission Humanitarian Aid department FARDC Forces Armées de la République Démocratique du Congo FAO Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN FDLR Forces Démocratiques de Libération du Rwanda FTS Financial Tracking Service HAG Humanitarian Advocacy Group HAP Humanitarian Action Plan HC Humanitarian Co-ordinator IASC Inter-Agency Standing Committee ICRC International Committee of the Red Cross IDP internally displaced person IRC International Rescue Committee INGO international non-government organisation MONUC UN Mission in DRC (peacekeeping) MSF Médecins Sans Frontières NFI non-food item NGO non-government organisation NRC Norwegian Refugee Council OCHA OHCHR UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights PARECO Coalition of Congolese Patriotic Resistance PEAR Programme of Expanded Assistance to Returns PF Pooled Fund Out of Site: Building better responses to displacement in the Democratic Republic of Congo by helping host families Oxfam International Research Report, September 2008 3  RRM Rapid Response Mechanism SRSG Special Representative to the Secretary-General UN United Nations UNDP United Nations Development Programme UNDSS United Nations Department of Safety and Security UNHCR United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees UNICEF United Nations Children’s Fund WFP World Food Programme Glossary  Agency, organisation: These terms are used inter-changeably in the report to refer to any non-profit, non-state entity, UN or non-UN, providing humanitarian assistance.  Formal camp:  A camp registered by UNHCR within the framework of the Camp Co-ordination and Camp Management (CCCM) mechanism. These camps are administered by national authorities, co-ordinated by UNHCR, and managed by an NGO. A formal camp receives more regular humanitarian assistance than a spontaneous site, including food, non-food items, and basic services.  Host community:  A community where IDPs live in host families or in nearby buildings or open spaces.  Host family:  A family with IDPs living in their home.  Hosted IDPs:  IDPs living with a host family, as opposed to a formal camp or a spontaneous site.  Hosting:  Taking IDPs into one’s family home.  IDP:  Internally displaced person. A person who has fled his or her home to seek refuge within his or her own country. Spontaneous site:  An area where IDPs have spontaneously settled, such as in or around a church, school, or administrative building, or in an open space. Spontaneous sites receive intermittent humanitarian assistance. They are sometimes called ‘spontaneous camps’, but the term ‘spontaneous site’ is used here to avoid confusion. Out of Site: Building better responses to displacement in the Democratic Republic of Congo by helping host families Oxfam International Research Report, September 2008 4
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