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Rohingya Crisis

Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya people have crossed over to Bangladesh. This is a large scale and escalating humanitarian crisis.

They are living in terrible conditions and need life-saving assistance now. More than 70% of the refugees are without adequate shelter and half have no safe drinking water.

Oxfam is responding now, providing clean water and other essential supplies. 

You can help: Donate now 

Last updated: 4/12/17

Sameera, 7 years old Rohingya girl holds her younger brother Omar who is 7 months old in front of their temporary shelter in one of the camps in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh.
Photo: Turjoy Chowdhury / Disasters Emergency Committee

Sameera, a seven year-old Rohingya girl holds her younger brother Omar, who is seven months, in front of their temporary shelter in one of the camps in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.

The situation

Over a million people are estimated to be in need of assistance. This includes 300,000 who arrived before August 2017 as well as more than half a million new arrivals since then. It also includes 300,000 people in Bangladeshi host communities. More are expected in the coming weeks.

More than 70% of the refugees are without adequate shelter and half have no safe drinking water.

Existing camps and the ones newly being set up are inadequate to deal with the massive influx, resulting in many seeking shelter under open skies, by the roadside and in forest areas with little or no protection. Those staying outside camps, in border areas have little or no access to clean drinking water. 

Water supply, water purification, and storage facilities are needed immediately. Due to the inadequate sanitation facilities, there's a high probability for the spread of waterborne diseases. 

Tommy Trenchard / Oxfam

Laila* arrived on Shah Porir Dwip island on 30 September with her two young children. She initially spent the night taking shelter in a local school before travelling by boat to mainland Bangladesh. (* Name changed)

Tommy Trenchard / Oxfam

  • 20,000 sanitary toilets are required immediately.
  • More than 400,000 people need food security assistance, of theses 140,00 are vulnerable people including pregnant and lactating women, and children under five. A large percentage of the influx population is children under the age of 10.
  • 326,700 people in makeshift settlements and spontaneous settlements are in need of emergency shelters. 60,000 shelters will be needed and land needs to be allocated for them. 

Recent rains have caused flooding in some of the makeshift settlements, and delivery of relief aid has slowed down. Some of the spontaneous settlements along slopes and roadsides are at risk of mudslides.

There is significant internal movement in to the nearby communities and cities as people look for essential supplies and means of survival leading to risks of exploitation, sexual violence, and trafficking. People who've arrived have little or no money. Even in cases where they do have some currency, they get poor exchange rates and have to pay high and unfair rates to buy essential supplies. 

Oxfam's response

Oxfam is responding now and has reached more than 185,000 people by providing clean drinking water, portable toilets and sanitation facilities, plastic sheets, and other essential supplies. In total, we are planning to reach more than 200,000 people.

Oxfam is monitoring the ground situation and will be flexible in our response. For example, we will provide support to the people who've recently arrived in the Kutupalong. 70,000 people have moved in to the locality so far, and the government may set up a camp. We will also help design the new camp to make sure water, sanitation, and hygiene facilities are in line with international humanitarian standards.

  • 140,000 people received food support
  • 185,000 people have access to safe drinking water
  • 1, 547 emergency latrines built in six refugee settlements
Bekki Frost

15 tonnes of vital water and sanitation equipment was loaded onto trucks at the Oxfam Supply Centre in Bicester on 22 September.

Bekki Frost

Oxfam's Bekki Frost reports from Bangladesh on the plight of half a million Rohingya refugees.

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