Clashes in Bambari in mid-February temporarily displaced thousands, left 36 people injured and dozens of shelters burned.
A surge in violence has displaced over 276,000 people within the Central African Republic since mid-December.
To meet the most urgent needs in 2021, humanitarian partners plan to assist 1.84 million people, for what they will require US$ 444.7 million.
In 2021, 2.8 million Central Africans – more than half of the population – will need humanitarian assistance and protection.
Humanitarians assisted 1.6 million people in 2020, mitigating the effects of food insecurity and malnutrition, providing shelters and water and protecting the most vulnerable.
Starting over, over and over again
Life has resumed in Bambari. This is at least the impression one gets when driving through the dusty streets. The latest delivery of trading goods from Sudan adds colour to the shops along the main street, carpenters saw up what will become furniture and motorcycles whizz past pedestrians.
Nothing as it used to be
But life is not as it used to be for everyone. The town in the heart of the Central African Republic is just emerging from its latest crisis. Two days lasted the combats in mid-February that seem momentarily forgotten in the centre of the city.
Not so for Fatima, sitting on a stool at the Elevage site, her home for the past four years and home for 8,500 other internally displaced persons. The site was the scene of fighting for 48 hours. When Fatima heard the first gunshots, the young woman grabbed her children and ran to a nearby building that used to house the local livestock authority. Made of concrete, it promised better protection than Fatima’s makeshift shelter made entirely of straw. The family stayed there for three full days. Children, the elderly, women and men, all crowded close together. « There were many of us, so many… », Fatima closes her eyes as she tries to recount how many families had gathered in the bare building and eventually becomes silent. The youngest were crying because they were hungry. The mothers were crying because they could not give them anything to eat, as the fighting was felt right up to their doorstep.